Mission Shakti – India’s Anti-Satellite (ASAT) Missile
Mission Shakti is a joint programme of the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) and the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO). India has shot down a low-orbit earth satellite at a height of 300 km from the earth’s surface. India has successfully tested the Anti-Satellite (ASAT) Missile.
India is only the 4th country to acquire such a specialised & modern capability. Entire effort is indigenous.
What is Anti-Satellite (ASAT) Missile?
Anti-satellite weapons (ASAT) are developed to defend against the enemy military satellite, by making it inactive or by destroying it for strategic military purposes and to protect home satellites as well. They can be deployed against enemy satellites, disrupting crucial intelligence during war. The interceptor missile was a three-stage missile with two solid rocket boosters.
Apart from India, only three other countries are known to have anti-satellite missiles: the US, Russia and China. The US started developing its anti-satellite missile programme in the 1950s. But after a series of unsuccessful attempts, the programme remained on the backburner till 1982, when news of a successful mission by the Soviet Union broke. The US then renewed the project, and on 13 September 1985, it successfully fired an anti-satellite missile from an airborne F-15 fighter jet. Later, in 2008, the US claimed another hit when it destroyed a dud satellite orbiting 247km above Earth.
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