Pinaka Extended Range Rocket System:
The DRDO (Defence Research and Development Organization) successfully test fired the Pinaka Extended Range (Pinaka-ER) Multiple Launch Rocket System (MLRS).
- Earlier, the DRDO also launched the Supersonic Missile Assisted Torpedo System (SMART).
- The Pinaka, a Multi-Barrel Rocket-Launcher (MBRL) system named after Shiva’s bow, can fire a salvo of 12 rockets over a period of 44 seconds.
- The new version is equipped with advanced technology to enhance its strength. The metal weight is lesser compared to the earlier version.
- The newly tested system can achieve a range of up to 45km which is a big feat for the Indian Army.
- The existing Pinaka system, which is already in the Army, has a range of up to 35-37km.
- The new incarnation of pinaka represents one of the few examples of an evolutionary process being followed with an indigenous Indian weapon system.
- The development of the Pinaka multi-barrel rocket systems was started by the DRDO in the late 1980s, as an alternative to the Multi Barrel Rocket Launcher systems of Russian make called the ‘Grad’, which are still used by some regiments.
- After successful tests of Pinaka Mark-1 in the late 1990, it was first used successfully in the battlefield during the 1999 Kargil War. Subsequently, multiple regiments of the system came up over the 2000s.
- DRDO has also developed and successfully tested the Mk-II and guided variants of the Pinaka, which has a range of around 60 km, while the Guided Pinaka system has a range of 75 km and has integrated navigation, control and guidance system to improve the end accuracy and enhance the range.
- The navigation system of the Guided Pinaka missile is also aided by the Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System (IRNSS).
- In 2020, an enhanced version of the Pinaka Mark (Mk)-1 missile was successfully flight-tested from the Integrated Test Range in Chandipur, off the coast of Odisha.