India Discusses Joint Production Of Javelin Anti-Tank Guided Missile With United States

Swarajya Staff

Jun 25, 2024, 02:07 PM | Updated 02:07 PM IST

A US Army soldier firing Javelin missile.
A US Army soldier firing Javelin missile.

India and the US are discussing the prospects of joint production of Javelin anti-tank guided missiles (ATGMs) that were successfully used by Ukrainians against Russian tanks and combat vehicles.

The high-level discussions took place when a US delegation visited India recently.

Javelin, made by Raytheon and Lockheed Martin, is a third-generation man-portable ATGM which can destroy armoured targets, including tanks, at ranges of more than 4 kilometres.

The missile and its launcher together weigh more than 22 kilograms, while an individual missile weighs just short of 16 kg (about 15.9 kg).

It is a fire-and-forget missile which uses a cooled imaging infrared seeker.

It can be fired in day, night, and adverse weather conditions and is capable of top-attack on enemy tanks. Top-attack is a type of trajectory where the missile, in its terminal phase, climbs and targets the least protected and most vulnerable part of the tank — its roof.

The US Army has successfully used this missile in Afghanistan, while the Ukrainians have used it to successfully blunt Russian armoured thrusts in Ukraine.

The Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) has already developed its analogous, a Made-in-India anti-tank missile, called man-portable anti-tank guided missile (MPATGM).

The missile, just last April, completed its technology development trials and is now ready to undergo final user evaluation trials.

When the Chinese began a standoff at the Line of Actual Control (LAC) after the deadly clashes in Galwan Valley in June 2020, India bought Israeli Spike ATGMs in limited numbers using emergency powers.

In 2014, Spike and Javelin underwent a competition for acquisition by the Indian Army, which was won by Spike ATGM.

This order was worth $1 billion, in which the army wanted north of 8,000 missiles and 321 launchers. However, the order did not materialise because the DRDO pitched in with its MPATGM.

According to reports, the Indian partner for joint production will be identified at a later stage.

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