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Indian Air Force Inducts Rampage Long-range Supersonic Air-to-ground Missile


Indian Air Force Inducts Rampage Long-range Supersonic Air-to-ground Missile

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Indian Air Force Inducts Rampage Long-range Supersonic Air-to-ground Missile
Indian Air Force Inducts Rampage Long-range Supersonic Air-to-ground Missile

Indian Armed Forces has taken a significant stride in bolstering its air combat capabilities with the recent induction of Rampage long-range supersonic air-to-ground missiles. With the capacity to strike targets up to 250 kilometers away, these missiles have been seamlessly integrated into the Indian Air Force and Navy’s arsenal, reinforcing their ability to engage high-value targets effectively. The Indian Air Force has incorporated Rampage missiles into its fleet of Russian-origin aircraft, including the Su-30 MKI, MiG-29 fighters, and Jaguar fighter jets. This integration not only enhances the striking capabilities of these aircraft but also provides the IAF with a versatile weapon system capable of engaging targets at extended ranges. The successful integration of Rampage missiles with the Su-30 MKI has notably augmented the firepower of the Russian aircraft fleet within the Indian Air Force.

Extending beyond the Indian Air Force, the Indian Navy has also embraced the Rampage missiles, primarily for its MiG-29K naval fighter jets. This addition significantly amplifies the navy’s prowess in targeting critical assets such as communication centers and radar stations, thereby strengthening its maritime defense capabilities. The decision to procure Rampage missiles was propelled by the emergency powers granted by the Defence Ministry to the armed forces post the 2020 standoff with China. These missiles, offering a longer reach compared to the Spice-2000s used in the Balakot air strikes, aligning with the evolving security dynamics in the region. This integration facilitates the simultaneous firing of multiple long-range air-to-ground missiles, including the BrahMos supersonic missiles boasting a strike range exceeding 400 kilometers.

Rampage Long-range Supersonic Air-to-ground Missile
Rampage Long-range Supersonic Air-to-ground Missile. (Photo by Elbit Systems)

The Rampage long-range supersonic air-to-ground precision strike missile features high survivability, operational flexibility and enables salvo strikes against high-value targets developed by Israel Military Industries (now Elbit System Land) derived from the EXTRA. The Rampage, initially named MARS (Multi-purpose, Air-launched Rocket System), is based on advanced technologies and designed for fast response and precision strikes, the innovative air-to-ground missile features a pre-programmable or in-flight mission profile, Navigation Satellite System/INS with anti-jam capabilities, a general purpose warhead and fire-and-forget capabilities. The missile is compatible with a variety of aircraft and features various methods of aircraft-to-weapon interface: standalone, via avionic system or wireless with mobile device inside the cockpit.

One of the standout features of the Rampage is its supersonic velocity, rendering it a challenging target for interception. Boasting a sleek profile at 4.7 meters (15.4 feet) in length and a weighty 570 kilograms, this supersonic projectile redefines the parameters of aerial combat. Guided by GPS/INS navigation systems equipped with anti-jamming capabilities, the Rampage ensures pinpoint accuracy even in contested environments. This advanced guidance technology enables it to navigate complex terrain and evade enemy countermeasures with ease. It was officially unveiled in June 2018 and reportedly used for the first time in April 2019 in Syria. As of July 2023, the Royal Air Force is looking at using Rampage missiles after donating Storm Shadow missiles to Ukraine. Rampage missiles are believed to be cheaper than Storm Shadow missiles and are more readily available.

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