Aerial Warfare

Indian Air Force Test-fires SAMAR Surface-to-air Missile System During Exercise Vayu Shakti-24

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Indian Air Force Test-fires SAMAR Surface-to-air Missile System During Exercise Vayu Shakti-24

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Indian Air Force Inducts SAMAR Air Defense System at Exercise Astrashakti
Indian Air Force SAMAR (Surface to Air Missile for Assured Retaliation) Surface-to-air Missile

The Indian Air Force conducted a successful test-firing of its recently inducted Surface to Air Missile for Assured Retaliation (SAMAR) air-defence system during Exercise “Vayu Shakti-24”. The exercise, which unfolded in the Pokhran range near Jaisalmer on 17 February, saw the SAMAR system, developed by the Indian Air Force in collaboration with private-sector companies Simran Flowtech Industries and Yamazuki Denki, demonstrate its capabilities alongside the Akash surface-to-air missile weapon system. The SAMAR air-defence system, officially inducted into the air force in December 2023, showcased its effectiveness by destroying multiple aerial targets during the exercise. This successful test comes after the system’s maiden firing at Air Force Station Suryalanka in the southern coastal region of India.

Test-fires SAMAR Surface-to-air Missile System. (Photo by  Indian Air Force )
Test-fires SAMAR Surface-to-air Missile System. (Photo by Indian Air Force )

Constructed by the Indian Air Force’s 7 Base Repair Depot (BRD) and 11 BRD, the SAMAR system is an integral part of India’s short-range air-defence capabilities. It is designed to intercept low-flying aerial threats such as unmanned aerial vehicles, loitering munitions, and attack helicopters within a range of 12 km, boasting a maximum speed of Mach 2.5. The SAMAR system employs Vympel R-73 and Vympel R-27 air-to-air missiles of Russian origin, which have been reprogrammed and repurposed for surface-to-air defense. The Indian Air Force successfully indigenized the prototype of the ground-based platform for firing air-to-air missiles under Project SAMAR, as detailed in the Ministry of Defence’s 2023 year-end report.

Test-fires SAMAR Surface-to-air Missile System. (Photo by  Indian Air Force )
Test-fires SAMAR Surface-to-air Missile System. (Photo by Indian Air Force )

Following extensive test firings, the SAMAR system made its public debut at the Aero India 2023 defense exhibition. The SAMAR-1 system, with its 12-kilometer range, is well-equipped to engage low-flying aerial targets, including fighter planes, helicopters, and UAVs. The Indian Air Force, through the Maintenance Command, has directed the SAMAR project towards a road mobile short-range air defence system, utilizing reconditioned Vympel R-73 and Vympel R-27 missiles that have reached the end of their flight shelf life. At Aero India 2023, the Indian Air Force confirmed the completion of SAMAR system development and its entry into the initial phase of manufacturing. With five production batches of SAMAR-1 ready for delivery, the air-Defence Missile Unit is poised to enhance India’s air defence capabilities significantly.

Test-fires SAMAR Surface-to-air Missile System. (Photo by  Indian Air Force )
Test-fires SAMAR Surface-to-air Missile System. (Photo by Indian Air Force )

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