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DRDO To Test Indigenous Laser Weapon DURGA-2

In a notable stride towards advanced military technology, the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) is reportedly gearing up to test a real prototype of its indigenous laser weapon system, DURGA-2. The project, designed in secrecy by the Indian defence establishment, has garnered attention in global strategic circles due to its potential to transform warfare dynamics by neutralizing ballistic missiles.

Silent Advancements & Advanced Testing Stage

  • Silent Advancements: While major military powers, including the United States, China, Turkey, Iran, and Pakistan, are actively involved in the development of laser weapon systems, DRDO’s Laser Laboratory has been silently working on this highly complex project for nearly two decades.
  • Advanced Testing Stage: The laboratory is now said to be in an advanced stage of testing the DURGA-2 prototype, with expectations that the test could take place in the first half of this year.

Directed Energy Weapons: The Future of Warfare

  • Laser Weapon Potential: Directed energy weapons, commonly known as laser weapons, operate by focusing energy through laser, microwave, or particle beams. If successfully developed and deployed, such weapons have the capability to safeguard vital defense infrastructure from missile or air attacks.
  • Game-Changing Technology: The laser weapon system under development by DRDO, named DURGA-2 (Directionally Unrestricted Ray Gun Array), holds significant promise and could prove to be a game-changer in the military domain.
  • Enhanced Effectiveness: In comparison to current anti-aircraft or anti-missile systems, laser weapons offer a higher kill probability, potentially reaching 100 percent effectiveness.

Strategic Implications of DURGA-2

  • Formidable Countermeasure: Indian strategic circles are buzzing with speculation about the deployment of the DURGA-2 system, which could be a formidable countermeasure against ballistic or cruise missiles launched by adversaries such as China or Pakistan.
  • Speed of Light Defense: The laser weapon’s ability to operate at the speed of light and deflect incoming missiles positions it as a highly effective defensive and offensive asset.

Laser Science and Technology Centre: Hub of Innovation

  • Government Allocation: The Laser Science and Technology Centre (LSTC) in New Delhi, reportedly the lead center for the classified DURGA-2 project, has been allocated $100 million by the government.
  • Technological Advancements: The laboratory is actively working on various laser generation techniques, including solid-state, fiber, and chemical lasers, for both defensive and offensive applications.
  • Platform Integration: The DURGA-2 system is planned to be integrated with land, sea, and air-based platforms.

Technical Achievements and Challenges Ahead

  • Successful Tests: Reports indicate that the LSTC has successfully developed a 25KW laser capable of targeting a ballistic missile during its terminal phase at a maximum distance of 5 km.
  • Ongoing Challenges: Overcoming challenges related to power supply remains a key focus for the development of high-power laser weapons.
  • Significant Stride for India: As the DRDO progresses towards the critical testing phase of DURGA-2, the potential deployment of this indigenous laser weapon system represents a significant stride for India in the realm of advanced defense technology.

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