• Updated version of indigenously developed PINAKA guided rocket system has successfully flight tested from Integrated Test range off the ODISHA coast.
• The Multi-barrel rocket launch system PINAKA and MK-II developed by DRDO is modified as a missile by integrating the navigator, the control and guidance systems to improve the accuracy and enhance the range.
• PINAKA has a range of 75 km with high precision.
• Navigation system is headed by NAVIC (Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System)
• It will boost Artillery’s capability to hit targets.
▪︎What exactly is PINAKA system?
-Basically, it’s a multi-barrel rocket launcher system. 12 Rockets can be fixed from its launcher in merely 44 seconds. And there are six launchers in a battery.
•In early 80’s this need was felt to have indigenous rocket launch system also known as PINAKA-I with range of 40 to 45 km.
•Finally in 1999 it came and was also tested in Kargil war and proved to be very useful and successful for army.
• Then PINAK Regiment was also raised. By 2022, there will be 10 such Regiments, with two more in the pipeline and a formal request for 6 more is pending.
• There was a requirement of increasing the range and navigation.
• The DRDL( Defence Research & Development Laboratory) Pune & ARDE( Armament Research and Development Establishment) they both collaborated and developed a new weapon system which has enhanced range of 75 km and Indigenous Navigation System.
• Its accuracy has also been measured 60-80m on the target area.
•Its extended version is also in pipeline which will have a range of 90km.
• Government and the Army is also thinking of collaborating with Israel for PINAKA-III which is proposed to have a range of 120 km.
2 • PINAKA-II, unlike its earlier version has an Antenna on its nose which makes it easy to guide.
• Simultaneously, it will also employee PATHFINDER, weapon locating system (American) and also SWATI missiles which is again Indigenous and battlefield surveillance radars, all combined will prove to be a force multiplier.
• It will also support mid-course correction which is suitable against moving targets like Tanks.
• “Circular error of Probability” will also get reduced which is currently 60-80m therefore improving accuracy.
• However, this also has some restrictions:-
1. The 8x8 vehicle on which it’s placed makes it a long chain. Therefore it can’t
be employed in all Terrains.
2. Specially in Mountains where roads are not that developed. Its movement
3. Its ammunition is too expensive. It’s gonna be 50-60 lakh per rocket.
However, it’s still cheaper due to indigenous edge.
• In the events of punitive strikes like Surgical Strike (2016) where the army crossed border. The PINAKA system will help in tracking without crossing the borders.
• Its great example of Public-Put partnership which has worked great since its Inception.
• It has got “shoot and scoot” which makes it difficult to target this system.
• Its modernized enough to work in environment of Nuclear Warfare (NPC) overall it’s fitting in Indian Army’s future plans.
Like BRAHMOS it also has potential (export potential) market in developing countries. It has been initially developed by L&T, TATA and OFB.