ASAT Missile
File photo of the A-SAT missile launch | PIB India
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New Delhi: The DRDO has ruled out future anti-satellite (A-SAT) missile tests in the lower earth orbit, but hinted at keeping the options open for possible experiments in higher orbits.

At a press conference Saturday, the Defence Research and Development Organisation also said any decision on weaponisation of space would be taken by the government.

The DRDO said the interceptor used for the 27 March successful A-SAT missile test had the capability to hit targets 1,000 km away, but they had intentionally chosen the target at an altitude of 283 km to prevent creation of space debris.

“The Indian interceptor had the capability to target a satellite at a height of 1,000 km but a low earth satellite was chosen to avoid (formation of) debris,” DRDO chairman G. Sateesh Reddy told reporters in New Delhi.

“We don’t need any more tests in this (lower earth) orbit now,” said Reddy. When asked if any more test would be needed in the future, including in higher earth orbit, he said, “We don’t need a test as of now.” With “as of now,” Reddy kept the option open.

On the issue of weaponisation of space, the DRDO chief said it is a decision the government has to take. “If a space command needs to be formulated, it is the decision of the government.”

The press meet was held after obtaining permission from the Election Commission.

Also read: US plays down NASA’s criticism of India’s A-SAT test

Space debris

Reddy said according to Indian simulations, there were no possibilities of hitting the International Space Station with A-SAT debris. “And this has been proven true, even NASA spoke about a 10-day risk period that is over today,” he said.

Many satellites, including the International Space Station, operate from much higher orbits.

Reddy said the simulation studies show all debris of the Indian A-SAT test would decay in 45 days.

‘40 women scientists worked on Mission Shakti’

Giving details of Mission Shakti, Reddy said 150 scientists worked on the project, which included at least 40 women.

He said the target for the A-SAT test was launched in January specifically for the same. It is believed that India took down its Microsat-R satellite.

Amid political debate on when the project was initiated, Reddy said the first discussion on the A-SAT test started in 2014 and the formal detailed presentation was made in 2016.

“Post the formal approval in 2016, we started working on this project,” Reddy said.

Also read: NASA is not the final word on space debris from A-SAT, says former DRDO chief Saraswat


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7 Comments Share Your Views


  1. We Indians are proud of what our IAF has done professionally precise and with full technical coverage through radars etc
    For us it is immaterial to underestimate the gains and losses
    Why we doubt what IAF done at the behest of foreign print media or Pak spokesman
    To conceal one lie Pak has been telling hundred more lies to give a distorted picture of IAF valour and strength
    After all what gain we will get in debating IAF heroic deeds
    Best everyone should avoid what has happened in the past and face music in future

  2. A long article .. anyways wing comdr shazadudin , nizamudin what ever you name so called F-16 PILOT , you can’t hide such a big reality from public , pilots do have families they have relations no one can hide this reality and it’s not easy to hide a Death . 2ndly now you suspect sqd ldr Hassan as the pilot who got shotdown ? Let me tell you Alhamdullila he came back after mission and you can see his video on YouTube and for your information Iknow him personally .
    So for you my question is abhinanDan mig shot down by sqd ldr Hassan , now who is the one who got appreciation by PAF Cheif ? It’s a question for every indian .. end of topic.

  3. Why print is politicisizing the security and national security progress ?? What’s your agenda Philip Alex ? Cant you leave something for drdo and government to decide .

  4. Mr suresh is as sick outside as his damn mentality. The worst thing as a human you do is hate humans…your self centered mind controller aproach is what has lead to death of innocent kashmiris and hindus on both side .you are sick

  5. When Osama was located in abbotabad USA should have bombed Pakistan.
    Polio and small pox may return to the world in large numbers because paki is against vaccination.
    World will be safe without pakistan


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