Quick Reaction SAMs (QRSAMs) are SRSAMs which are required for employment in mobile operations and have to keep pace with mechanised columns advancing in the plains and the desert sector on the Western front. The Indian Navy also has a requirement for a SRSAM as this is lighter and can be deployed on ships unlike the Akash which is seen too bulky.
QRSAM capability includes capability for surveillance, acquisition and engagement of targets on move with firing immediately on halting.
Indian acquisition of the QRSAM commenced with a joint project between the French firm MBDA and the Defence Research and Development Lab, the DRDL. MBDA was to provide, “active homing-head, thrust vector control, terminal guidance system and composites for a modified propulsion system for the missile, while the software, command-and-control system, the launchers and system integration work would be carried out by the DRDL”.
The Electronics & Radar Development Establishment (LRDE), Bangalore was developing two indigenous radars for the Maitri project based on the new-generation variants of Central Acquisition Radar (3D-CAR), with the ability to track 150 targets simultaneously at a distance of 200 kilometers. The naval variant was called the Revati and the air force version called Rohini.
However reports indicate that the DRDO decided to develop the QRSAM indigenously based on the experience gained in the development of the Astra air to air missile.
The QR of the system as per Live Fist are surveillance, target acquisition and tracking on the move, firing at short halts with a kill zone of 3 to 30 km in range and 30 to 60 km in altitude with a 360 degree azimuth. Multi target engagement capability is desired including against helicopters and UAVs with an all weather capability. A capability for engaging sub sonic cruise missiles is also envisaged.
Four trials have been carried out so far June 4, 2017, 3 July 2017, 23 December 2017 and in April 2018 however there are mixed indications of success.