India test-fires Nag anti-tank missiles

New Delhi (UPI) Jun 17, 2010 India successfully test-fired an anti-tank Nag guided missile hitting a moving target in 3.2 seconds, the Defense Research and Development Organization said. Last week a similar Nag missile launched from a Namica tracked missile carrier destroyed a stationary object in 3 seconds at the army's firing range at Shamirpet near Hyderabad, the DRDO said.
"The army wanted the capabilities of the missile to be tested while engaging a short-range target," the chief controller for research and development said. "We have successfully completed this user requirement. The missile hit the target within three seconds after its launch from a Nag missile carrier."
The Nag, which has a range of around 2.5 miles, locks onto its target using an imaging infrared seeker and carries a high-explosive anti-tank warhead for piercing the strongest tank armor. The Nag can be launched day or night, the DRDO said.
User trials of the land version have been going on for two years in the deserts of the state of Rajasthan.
The first test of the airborne version, called Helina, will be from a helicopter and is expected to be conducted by the end of the year. But the army is likely to clear the Namica-launched version of the missile for use next month with immediate introduction.

The blunt-nosed Nag, which means Cobra, is a third-generation "fire-and-forget" anti-tank missile. It is part of the DRDO's Integrated Guided Missile Development Program started in the early 1980s and is being developed by DRDO's own Hyderabad-based Defense Research and Development Laboratory.
Pre-production of the Nag has been at Bharat Dynamics in Hyderabad and initial orders are believed to be for more than 440 missiles.
The blunt-nosed tandem solid-propulsion Nag weighs around 95 pounds, is 6.3 feet long and 7.5 inches in diameter. The warhead can weigh up to 18 pounds and the missile burns a smokeless nitramine propellant.
The U.S. Javelin and the Israeli Spike missiles are lighter for carrying by a soldier.
An earlier wire-guided Nag version was dropped because of technical difficulties.
The Namica-launched version of the Nag is a lock-on-before launch system by which the target is identified before the missile is fired. Range is limited to 2.5 miles because target identification of the target is visual.
The airborne Helina version will have a lock-on-after system extending its range to nearly 4.5 miles. The missile will be launched in the general direction of the target and feeds images back to the operator who then identifies the target for the missile to attack.
The more advanced Helina version will use a nose-mounted millimetric-wave active radar seeker.

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