Mihir, that's the thing - it wont make things easier, but harder, because you will need far more changes to the FCR and developing a SARH seeker in parallel with an ARH, even if an ARH is far more flexible?
Saurav's comment seems to be more about Akash NG per se. Not the active seeker.
The seeker being active does not have to do with range alone, it has to do with survivability as well. An ARH is fire and forget (especially at the range we are talking of) and allows more rounds per target, the SARH is illuminator based, and forces a FCR lock onto the target.
Now look at this, from Pandit as to why IA initially rejected Akash and then accepted the Akash1 S:
"Neither does Akash have the requisite 360 degree coverage, nor the 3-4 second reaction time the Army wants. Moreover, Akash has a large radar ground signature with several vehicles required for its missile launchers, multi-function radars and the like," said a source.
1. 360 degree coverage issue - can be enhanced with ARH capability (you dont need 4 FCRs pointing constantly in 4 areas)
2. Reaction time - much faster, as a coarse surveillance beam can guide the missile in and the ARH comes in
3. Large ground signature - again, this is linked to the CLOS guidance. None of this is helped with SARH! SARH = CLOS in signature as FCR guidance all the way is essential.
The IA then chose the Israeli option citing the above. Israeli option has a) ARH equipped and IIR equipped missiles. b ) Only one surveillance radar for the missiles (low footprint) c ) Thermal/CCD vision with an EO/LRF based optical system for jamming conditions.
Then this is what happened.http://indiatoday.intoday.in/story/make ... 64717.html
The case for acquiring Short Range Surface to Air Missiles (SRSAMs) was taken up for discussion during the DAC meeting where the government had to decide whether to go for a foreign missile system or the Akash surface to air missile systems. Jaitley went on for the indigenous option, sources said.
Top army sources confirmed that the force would be utilising the Akash missiles for protection against the incoming aircraft and unmanned aerial vehicles of the adversaries as the system would be deployed on both the Pakistan and China border. Sources said there were a few specific systems and equipment available on the foreign system that were asked for by the army for the missile system which DRDO assured would be provided.
So, in my view DRDO would have added the RF seeker (hence Akash 1S) and also likely this (https://www.drdo.gov.in/drdo/pub/npc/20 ... b2016.pdf;
clearly mentioned for Akash NG as well, but note report is from last year, before Akash 1S was launched)
Now add this to the recent report:http://indiatoday.intoday.in/story/make ... 02047.html
SR-SAM project for the Army (expected cost Rs 20,000 crore): Under this programme, the Army wanted to buy missiles from global vendors in Russia, Israel and Sweden. The force demanded that they want a system in which the missile should have a sensor to track and target the incoming missiles accurately. The DRDO then offered its latest version of Akash missile with an indigenous sensor. The project was accepted, and the then defence minister Arun Jaitley scrapped the global tender.
Hence, in my view the Akash 1S = Akash with a new ARH seeker (and probably the SEOS) but rest remains same, capabilities increase though.
Akash NG is completely new architecture intended for an ARH deployment with newer AESA radars, smaller footprint, ARH seeker, SEOS . New missile design etc etc etc.
Mihir wrote:Karan, my guess is that the SARH seeker makes it easier to upgrade the batteries that have already been deployed. You could swap out the seekers in existing missiles and still use the remaining support systems. Also, it's likely enough for a 25 km range missile. For an Astra that needs to hit targets 60+ km out, an active seeker makes more sense.
Aditya and Rakesh, Saurav didn't specifically state it, but he did imply it. "Wait until you see the Akash NG with an active seeker", to me, implies that the 1S has a passive seeker.