‘Meteor’ missile to put India ahead of China
New Delhi: India and France are in the process of signing the most awaited €7.87 billion deal for 36 Rafale fighters for Indian Air Force. As news reports suggest, this deal includes World’s most advanced ‘Meteor’ air-to-air missile.
Meteor missile designed to destroy enemy aircraft and cruise missiles with a range of more than 100 km away.
According to defence experts, most air forces in the world, including those of Pakistan and China, have no answer for the ‘Meteor’. The inclusion of this missile is likely to be game changer in South Asia.
The other comparable air-to-air missile as capable of Meteor is the AIM-120D, the latest variant of the US Advanced Medium Range Air-to-Air Missile which is also designed to hit targets more than 100 km away. Analysts point out that the Meteor is likely to be more capable because of its ramjet engine.
At the moment, India and France are finalising details of the Inter-governmental agreement on India’s acquisition of the Rafale. A French team, currently in Delhi, is reviewing the contract which runs into several thousand pages. Once this document is firmed up, the file goes back to the Cabinet Committee on Security for final approval.
A high-level delegation from France could come down for the formal signing of the contract, French sources said. The delivery for the fighter aircraft is expected to begin in 2019.
About ‘Meteor’ Missile
Meteor is the next generation of Beyond Visual Range Air-to-Air Missile (BVRAAM) system designed to revolutionise air-to-air combat in the 21st Century.
Guided by an advanced active radar seeker, Meteor provides all weather capability to engage a wide variety of targets from agile fast jets to small un-manned Aerial Vehicles and cruise missiles. It is designed to meet the most stringent of requirements and is capable of operating in the most severe of clutter and countermeasure environments.