The government-owned Indian Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) has performed a test firing of an advanced prototype of the indigenous Man Portable Anti‐Tank Guided Missile (MPATGM) on 11 January, the Ministry of Defence (MoD) in New Delhi announced.
The ministry said the test evaluated the MPATGM in its “final deliverable configuration”, which validated performance over its expected minimum range. The missile’s maximum range performance was already proven in earlier tests, which have been under way for several years, it added.
The MPATGM features a miniaturised infrared imaging seeker and advanced avionics for onboard control and guidance and is being developed for the Indian Army by the DRDO in partnership with Hyderabad-based aerospace and defence company VEM Technologies.
The MoD also described the MPATGM as a low-weight, third-generation fire-and-forget missile that can be launched from a man-portable launcher integrated with a thermal sight and a tripod-mounted command and launch unit. The weapon system comprises a launching unit with a thermal sight and a containerised missile.
It is understood that the containerised missile weighs 14.5 kg and is armed with a tandem-high-explosive anti-tank (HEAT) warhead that features folded wings located behind the main warhead and four folding control fins at its rear. An onboard powerpack is situated mid-body between the warhead and rocket motor.
The missile’s minimum and maximum ranges are 200 m and 2,500 m, respectively.
The DRDO earlier flight-tested the MPATGM on 21 July 2021. On the same day it also test-fired the indigenously developed Akash-NG (New Generation) surface-to-air missile (SAM) which is being developed for the Indian Air Force.
The MPATGM is designed to be operated by a two-person crew in a tripod-mounted configuration, but can also be potentially mounted on light vehicles.
Development of the MPATGM began in 2015 to replace the Indian Army’s legacy Konkurs and the French Milan systems that are locally produced by Bharat Dynamics Limited (BDL).
by Jr Ng