India has tested its very first antisatellite (ASAT) missile on Wednesday by destroying a de-commissioned Indian satellite in a low earth orbit using a missile which covered a distance of 300 Km to engage the satellite. The missile hit the satellite within 3 min of launch. Missile uses kinetic energy to hit the satellite.
What is ASAT (Anti-Sateliite)
Anti-satellite weapons are space weapons designed to incapacitate or destroy satellites for strategic military purposes.
It is one of most complex test carried out by India, which is considered even more advanced than the development of submarine launched missile system.
DRDO (Defense Research and Development Organization) was capable of testing this missile back in 2012, but was not given the authority to do so. This missile has a capability of detecting the space target on low earth orbit and destroying it in minutes.
This test will not create any space debris as it is done in low earth orbit, and any debris generated will decay and fall back to earth within weeks. Unlike China’s test in 2007 which created debris in space which put other satellite in danger.
What does this mean for India?
India is 4th country to acquire such modernized capability after USA, Russia and China. This has put India in a stronger position. India has clearly stated that they have no intention of entering into an arms race in outer space.
Having a ASAT missile just gives India new strength. And it was a critical to protect Indian interests in space. This test has provided ‘credible deterrence’ against threats to space-based assets from long- range missiles.
We as an Indian are proud for such a huge step taken by our government and scientist at DRDO for testing a ballistic missile that can take down satellite by targeting in low earth orbit.
Source Economic Times