DRDO’s weapon-locating radar Swati was formally handed over to the Indian Army on Thursday, with Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar saying its deployment will reduce artillery fire from across the border.
Sources said four radars deployed along the Line of Control for trial have already proved their efficacy since artillery fire from Pakistan’s side had reduced after their deployment.
The Indian Army has at present ordered 30 such radars. “The radars have been on the LoC for two months now for trials. Artillery fire has gone down,” a defence source said.
The weapon-locating radar developed by the DRDO’s Electronic and Radar Development Establishment provides fast and accurate location of enemy artillery including shells, mortars and rockets.
The radar is also capable of guiding fire from an artillery gun attached to it, meaning thereby that the radar can not only locate artillery guns on the enemy side but also ensure their destruction.
Speaking at the event organised to hand over the radar and other equipment to the Army by the Defence Research and Development Organisation, Parrikar lauded the scientists.
“Swati could be a great equipment to ensure adversaries do not use artillery fire. If the LoC is devoid of any artillery fire in the near future, you can be sure Swati radar has gone there,” the minister said.
He said the radar, however, used a “passive array”, and suggested the DRDO develop a radar using “active array” in a couple of years. “The passive array radar can then be exported, after the Army gets enough numbers,” the minister said.
Parrikar also congratulated the DRDO for successful trial of exo-atmospheric Prithvi Defence Vehicle (PDV) interceptor missile and endo-atmospheric Advanced Air Defence missile, both part of a two-tier anti-ballistic missile system. “Last year has been very fruitful for the DRDO. There were around 25 missile tests… usually they get criticism,” Parrikar said.