Barak 8

Surface-to-air missile (medium and long range)
Barak 8 / LR-SAM / MR-SAM
Salon du Bourget 20090619 077.jpg
Scale-model of the Barak-8ER concept unveiled at the 2009 Paris Air Show. Visible below is the addition of a large diameter 1st stage booster.[1]
Typesurface-to-air missile (medium and long range)
Place of originIndia, Israel
Service history
In service2016−present[2]
Used byIndian Navy
Indian Air Force
Indian Army
Israeli Navy
Azerbaijan Air Force
Production history
DesignerIsrael Aerospace Industries[3]
Defence Research and Development Organisation
ManufacturerBharat Dynamics Limited
Bharat Electronics Limited
Rafael Advanced Defense Systems
Mass275 kg (606 lb)[4](w/out booster)
Length4.5 m (180 in)[4](w/out booster)
  • 0.225 m (8.9 in) at main missile body
  • 0.54 m (1 ft 9 in)[4] initial-stage rocket motor, Barak-8ER version[1]
Warhead60 kg[4]
hard kill[5]

Enginesmokeless dual pulsed rocket motor; 1-stage or 2-stage rocket variants
Wingspan0.94 m (3 ft 1 in)[4]
  • 0.5 km-70 km[5](single-stage rocket) version: Barak-8 MRSAM, Barak LRAD"
  • 0.5 km-100 km[6][7] (single stage rocket) version: Barak-8 LRSAM"
  • ?km-150 km[5](2-stage rocket) version: Barak ER
Flight ceiling
  • 16 km (9.9 mi)[citation needed]
  • 20 km (12 mi): Barak LRAD & MRAD'
  • 30 km (19 mi) Barak ER
Maximum speed
  • Mach 2[4] (LRSAM variant)
  • Mach 3+ [5] (MRSAM variant)
  • 2-way datalink w/ WCS[8]
  • Active RF seeker[8]
  • Infrared Homing Guidance[citation needed]
  • 8 cell VLS module
  • 8 cell, double stacked land launcher

Barak 8 (Hebrew: בָּרָק, lit. "Lightning"), also known as LR-SAM or as MR-SAM,[9][10][11] is an Indo-Israeli jointly developed surface-to-air missile (SAM) system, designed to defend against any type of airborne threat including aircraft, helicopters, anti-ship missiles, and UAVs as well as ballistic missiles,[12] cruise missiles and combat jets.[13] Both maritime and land-based variants of the system exist.[14]

Barak 8 was jointly developed by India's Defence Research & Development Organisation (DRDO) and Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI). The Barak 8 missile defence system is produced by Israel's Directorate of Research and Development (DDR&D), Elta Systems, Rafael Advanced Defense Systems and India's Bharat Dynamics limited (BDL).[15]


Barak 8 is loosely based on the original Barak 1 missile and is expected to feature a more advanced seeker, alongside range extensions that will move it closer to medium range naval systems like the RIM-162 ESSM or even the SM-2 Standard. Israel successfully tested the improved Barak II missile on July 30, 2009. The radar system provides 360 degree coverage and the missiles can take down an incoming missile as close as 500 meters away from the ship. Each Barak system (missile container, radar, computers and installation) costs about $24 million.[16] In November 2009 Israel signed a $1.1 billion contract to supply an upgraded tactical Barak 8 air defence system to India.[17] In May 2017, India placed an order of $630 million for four ships of the Indian Navy.[18] In September 2018, MDL and GRSE awarded Bharat Electronics Limited with a $1.28 billion contract to supply seven Barak-8 air defence systems for Project 17A-class frigates. In October 2018, Bharat Electronics Limited signed a $777 million deal with Israel Aerospace Industries to help fulfil the Barak-8 order.[19] Parallel to the Barak-8, IAI has completed development and is manufacturing the Barak MX system that broadens the Barak into a multi-layered air defense system employing unified smart launchers carrying Short, Medium, and Extended-Range interceptors. The Smart Launcher supports flexible deployment architecture for land and naval applications. Unlike the Barak-8 system, the interceptors, and sensors were developed exclusively by IAI to meet specific requirements from domestic and foreign customers.[20]

The missile is expected to equip the Indian Navy's future Visakhapatnam-class destroyers and Nilgiri-class frigate.[21][22]

Design (LRSAM)

Barak 8 launcher module

The Barak 8 has a length of about 4.5 meters, a diameter of 0.225 meters at missile body, and 0.54 meters at the booster stage, a wingspan of 0.94 meters and weighs 275 kg including a 60 kg warhead which detonates at proximity. The missile has maximum speed of Mach 2[4] with a maximum operational range of 70 km,[13][23][24] which was later increased to ~90km,[25] which again was later further increased to 100 km.[6][7] Barak 8 features a dual pulse rocket motor as well as thrust vector control,[1] and possesses high degrees of maneuverability at target interception range. A second motor is fired during the terminal phase, at which stage the active radar seeker is activated to home in on to the enemy track. Barak 8 has been designed to counter a wide variety of air-borne threats, such as; anti-ship missiles, aircraft, UAVs drones and supersonic missiles[26] When coupled with a modern air-defence system and multi-function surveillance track and guidance radars, (such as the EL/M-2248 MF-STAR AESA on board the Kolkata-class destroyers) Barak 8 enables the capability to simultaneously engage multiple targets during saturation attacks.[8]

Israel Aerospace Industries describe Barak 8 as "an advanced, long-range missile defense and air defense system" with its main features being:[8][27]

  • Long Range
  • Two way data link (GPS S band)
  • Active Radar Seeker Missile
  • 360 degree coverage
  • Smokeless propulsion
  • Thrust vector control
  • Dual pulse propulsion
  • Vertical Launch
  • Multiple Simultaneous Engagements
  • Point defence anti-ballistic missile[12]


MRSAM is the land based configuration of the missile. It consists of a command and control system, tracking radar, missile and mobile launcher systems. Each launcher will have eight such missiles in two stacks and are launched in a canister configuration. The system is also fitted with an advanced radio frequency (RF) Seeker. It has a range of 70Kms.[28][11]

In 2010 July 1 report: Replying to a query on the Indo-Israeli joint venture to develop a medium range surface-to-air missile, the DRDO chief said, "More than 70 per cent of the content in the missile being developed with Israel would be indigenous." DRDO chief V. K. Saraswat told The Economic Times.[29]

The Indian Army ordered five regiments(40 Launchers) of this version, which consists of 8 launcher vehicles each. And a lot of extra 200 missiles for 17,000 crore (US$2.1 billion).[11][30][31][32]

In July 2019, the Indian Army and Air Force awarded a $100 million contract to produce 1,000 MR-SAMs to Kalyani Rafael Advanced Systems (KRAS), a joint venture between the Kalyani Group and Rafael.[33][34] The missiles are manufactured at Kalyani Rafael's plant in Hyderabad, Telangana, and then sent to Bharat Dynamics Limited for further integration. KRAS announced that it had begun delivery of the first batch of MR-SAMs on 16 March 2021 to Indian Airforce. The Airforce has placed order for 18 Squadrons with 3 Launcher(8 missiles each) vehicle. [35][36]

On 23rd November 2020, It was successfully tested, An unmanned air vehicle (UAV), Banshee was hit mid-air accurately. The entire mission trajectory from the launch to plunging into the sea was monitored by various radars and electro-optico instruments.[37]

On 27th March 2022, DRDO carried out two test of MRSAM at ITR Balasore. The test was against the high speed aerial target at long range. The missile destroyed the target in a direct hit. The first test was of medium altitude at long range target and second launch was for the capability of a low altitude at short range target.[38][39][40] The test was user trial for the Indian Army.

Barak-8ER & Barak-ER

An ER (extended range) variant of the Barak 8 is under development, which will see the missiles maximum range increased to 150 km. Designed to engage multiple beyond visual range threats, the low launch signature Barak-8ER is understood to retain the same autopilot/inertial navigation system and active radar seeker guidance as the Barak-8, although some modifications to the software and to the missile control surfaces are likely. The booster increases the length of the missile at launch from its current 4.5 m to nearly 6 m, although the length in flight after the booster has been jettisoned may be slightly less than the base Barak-8 missile, if a TVC is not present. The missile diameter and fin spans are thought to be the same as the base Barak-8. The booster weight is currently unknown, although the missile's weight after the booster has been jettisoned is the same as that for the current Barak-8 configuration. Levy said that initial operational capability (IOC) for Barak-8ER will first be declared for the naval variant, followed by IOC for the land variant. He declined to comment on a launch customer for Barak-8ER, but noted "existing Barak-8 customers will be interested in this configuration because it offers additional capability to their current system".[1]

Israel has completed the test of a new Barak 8 Extended-range interceptor that can destroy a target 150 km away on 22 March, 2021. The extended range interceptor reaches an altitude of 30 kilometers (18.6 miles). "The combination of several interceptors in a unified launcher and the inherent modularity of the Barak system provide an optimal response for the future battlefield," IAI president and CEO Boaz Levy said in a statement after the test. The missile has been designed to shoot down aircraft, helicopters, drones, anti-ship missiles, ballistic missiles, and cruise missiles.

Flight tests

  • In 2010 May 14, the LRSAM (also called Barak-II during that time) was successfully test fired at an electronic target and met its initial objectives.[41] The second test of the missile was planned to be held in India sometime later that same year, stated on that same report.
  • In 2014 November 10, the Barak-8 Air and Missile Defence System was successfully test fired in Israel with all integrated operational components for both the marine & land system. "The current test validated all components of the weapon system to the satisfaction of the customer representatives," the statement said. It was the first involving a full operational scenario, the company said in a statement.[42] The scenario began with launching the target. After being detected by the System's radar, the weapon system calculated the optimal interception point, launched the Barak-8 missile into its operational trajectory that acquired the target, and successfully intercepted it. All the weapon system's components met the test's goals successfully.[43]
  • In 2015 November 26, a successful test was conducted against a fast-moving jet-powered drone by an Israeli Sa'ar5-type corvette INS Lahav. This was also the first test done from a naval ship, and also confirmed the range extension from the previous 70km to ~100km.[44][6]
  • In 2015 December 29 & 30, the Indian Navy successfully test-fired Barak 8 LRSAM from INS Kolkata (D63).[45][46] Two missiles were fired at high speed targets, during naval exercises being undertaken in the Arabian Sea.[47][48]
INS Kolkata firing a Barak-8 LRSAM
  • On 30 June 2016, India test-fired a land based version of the Barak 8 surface-to-air missile for the first time from the Integrated Test Range (ITR) in Chandipur, Odisha, successfully hitting the target pilotless target aircraft (PTA) at 8:15 AM IST.[49] the missile was again test fired for second time around noon where it again successfully hit a pilotless target aircraft over the Bay of Bengal. The test-firing of the missile was jointly carried out by Indian defence personnel, DRDO and IAI.[50][51][52][53]
  • On 1 July 2016 the MR SAM (land based version) was tested for the third time from the ITR at Chandipur, at 10:26 AM IST and the missile successfully hit a pilotless target aircraft, proving its reliability.[54]
  • On 20 September 2016, India successfully test fired the Barak-8. The long range missile was launched from a mobile launcher at the ITR in Chandipur at around 10:13 AM IST.[55]
  • On 25 December 2016, Azerbaijan successfully tested the missile.[56]
  • On 10 February 2017, Israel Aerospace Industries test fired the missile at sea to verify its capabilities.[57][58]
  • On 16 May 2017, the Indian Navy successfully test fired the MRSAM variant from INS Kochi (D64).[59][60]
  • On 29 November 2017, the Indian Navy test fired again the MRSAM from INS Kochi (D64).[61]
INS Kochi firing a Barak-8 MRSAM variant
  • On 25 January 2019, the Indian Navy test fired the LRSAM from INS Chennai (D65) against an incoming aerial target flying at a low altitude.[62]
  • In 2019 May 15, the MRSAM variant was first operated in their full Joint Taskforce Coordinating (JTC) mode by the Indian Navy via their 2 Kolkata-class destroyers: INS Kochi (D64) and INS Chennai (D65). The JTC mode implements the Cooperative Engagement Capability (CEC) of the Barak-8 MRSAM system. Both ships launched the missiles but only 1 was doing the actual engagement role. The demonstration was done on India's western seaboard.[5]
  • On 22 March 2021, Israel Aerospace Industries successfully test fired Barak ER (extended range) interceptor with 150 km range & 30 km altitude.
  • On 27 March 2022, Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) conducted two successful flight tests of the Indian Army version of Medium Range Surface to Air Missile (MRSAM) at Integrated Test Range, Chandipur off the coast of Odisha. The first launch was to intercept a medium altitude long range target and second launch was for proving the capability of a low altitude short range target.[63]
  • On 30 March 2022, Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) again conducted two successful flight tests of the Indian Army version of Medium Range Surface to Air Missile (MRSAM) at Integrated Test Range, Chandipur off the coast of Odisha within 3 days. The launches were carried out establishing the accuracy and reliability of the weapon system against targets covering the sea skimming and high altitude functionality within the envelope. With the conclusion of flight trials for different ranges and scenarios, the system has completed its development trials.[64]


The Israeli Navy has commenced equipping its Sa'ar 5 corvettes with the system, the first re-fitted vessel being the INS Lahav. The Sa'ar 4.5 flotilla will be next for the upgrade.[65] The Indian Navy has already deployed the missiles on Kolkata class-class destroyer, Visakhapatnam-class destroyers,[46] INS Vikramaditya.

Middle East Eye quoted an unnamed official from an unnamed country stating that a Barak 8 operated by the Azerbaijani Armed Forces intercepted an Iskander missile shot by Armenia towards Baku towards the end of the 2020 Nagorno-Karabakh war, adding that the firing of the Iskander convinced the Azerbaijan government to accept a ceasefire.[66] Whether Armenia used any Iskanders during the war is disputed: there were reports on social media of Armenia using the Iskander, but Russia's defense ministry said Armenia didn't fire any Iskanders, and Azerbaijan stated it didn't detect any Iskander launches during the war.[67]

The Indian Air Force got the first MRSAM system on 9 September 2021 which guards the Jaisalmer Air Force Station.[68]

On July 2, 2022, Barak 8 missiles launched from the Saar 5 Class Corvette INS Eilat shot down two reconnaissance UAVs operated by Hezbollah over the Israeli off-shore Karish gas field in the Mediterranean sea.[69]


Map with Barak 8 operators in blue

Current operators

  •  Azerbaijan – Azerbaijan bought 12 Barak-8 missiles systems along with 75 missiles.[70][71][72]
  •  India – India has use worth of $5 billion Barak-8 missiles for its Air Force, Navy and Army.[73] Kolkata-class destroyers, Visakhapatnam-class destroyers,[46] INS Vikramaditya, INS Vikrant and Nilgiri-class frigates[74][75]
  •  Israel – Israel's Sa'ar 5-class corvettes carry the newer Barak 8 missile system, instead of Barak 1. To that end, INS Lahav, a Sa'ar 5-class corvette live-fired the Barak 8 missile system, during a trial in late 2015. Subsequently, the navy will convert lighter Sa'ar 4.5-class corvettes in two to three years.[65]
  •  Morocco – confirmed $500 million contract for Barak MX air defense missile systems.[76]

Potential operators

See also

  • Tor missile system
  • Bavar-373
  • Sayyad-4
  • Ra'ad
  • Khordad 15
  • MIM-104 Patriot
  • RIM-66 Standard
  • RIM-67 Standard
  • Aster
  • CAMM
  • RIM-174 Standard ERAM
  • Akash
  • Akash-NG
  • Barak-1
  • HQ-9


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External links

  • Barak 8 on the IAI website
  • Jane's Naval Weapons: Barak 1/2/8
  • Defense Industry Daily - India & Israel Introducing MR-SAM
  • Defense Update - Barak-8 MR-SAM program
  • The Indian Express (Oct 12/06) - What CBI does not say: Trishul a DRDO dud, that's why Barak deal
  • Barak SAM
  • IAI Barak 8 Video
  • Israel First Interception Test - Video
  • Indian Navy Barak 8 Test - Video 1
  • Indian Navy Barak 8 Test - Video 2
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  • Barak 8[4]
  • Gabriel
  • LORA
  • Arrow[5]
  • Arrow 3[5]
  • SkySniper
[1] Under license from Fouga. [2] Joint venture with RUAG. [3] Joint venture with Rafael. [4] Joint venture with DRDO. [5] Joint venture with Boeing.
  • v
  • t
  • e
Other HAL programmes
Unmanned aerial vehicles
  • Nishant
  • Rustom
  • Lakshya
  • Kapothaka
  • Ulka
  • Fluffy
  • Imperial Eagle
  • Netra
Small arms
  • Vidhwansak
  • MSMC
Artillery systems and ammunition
Armoured fighting
  • Arjun
  • Arjun Mk-II
  • Tank EX
  • DRDO light tank
Infantry fighting vehicle
Abhay IFV
Other vehicles
Electronics and
Computer Sciences
Electronic warfare
Missile systems
Ballistic missiles
  • Agni-I
  • Agni-II
  • Agni-III
  • Agni-IV
  • Agni-V
  • Agni-VI
  • Agni-P
  • Shaurya
  • Prahaar
Cruise missiles
  • Nirbhay
  • BrahMos
    • II
Air-to-air missiles
  • Astra BVRAAM
Anti-tank missiles
  • Akash
  • Akash-NG
  • Trishul
  • Barak 8
  • BrahMos-A
  • Helina
  • Rudram-1
  • Prithvi Air Defence (PAD)
  • Advanced Air Defence (AAD)
  • PDV Mk.2
  • TAL
  • ALWT
  • Varunastra HWT
Precision guided
General purpose
  • Maj General Ranjit Lal Jetley
  • Ram Narain Agarwal
  • A. P. J. Abdul Kalam
  • A. Sivathanu Pillai
  • W Selvamurthy
  • V. K. Saraswat
  • V. K. Aatre
  • Raja Ramanna
  • V. S. Mahalingam
  • Keshav Dattatreya Nayak
  • Tessy Thomas
  • Shashikala Sinha
  • Ipsita Biswas
  • S. P. Chakravarti
  • Waman Dattatreya Patwardhan
Important programmes
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