Air Weapons: May 13, 2003


After five years of effort, India conducted the first test of it's Astra, long range air-to-air missile. The missile was launched from the ground to test its solid fuel rocket. The current version of the missile has a range of up to 40 kilometers. But the final version of the missile is supposed to have a range of a hundred kilometers. India already has missiles like this; the French Matra 530D and the Russian AA-10C and AA-12. The Astra appears to have borrowed a lot of ideas from the Matra and AA-12 missiles. If India can carry this project to completion, it would be a prestige thing. Few nations can build these kinds of missiles. Even China is having trouble with it. 


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