Pinaka Multi Barrel Rocket Launcher

Pinaka Multi Barrel Rocket Launcher

Infobox Weapon
name= Pinaka

caption= Pinaka multi barrel rocket launcher
origin= flagcountry|India
type= Rocket artillery
used_by=Indian Army
wars= Kargil war
designer= DRDO
design_date= 1986
manufacturer= Larsen & Toubro
Tata Group
unit_cost= $ 0.58 million [ [ India developed and successfully tested cheapest indigenously developed multi-barrel Pinaka rocket launcher] ]
production_date= 1998 [ [ Pinaka Multibarrel Rocket Launcher -] ] - Present
number= 80
caliber= 214mm
barrels= 12
rate= Rockets - 12 in < 40 sec
max_range= 40 km / 120 km
filling_weight= 100kg
speed= Launcher: 80 km/h

Pinaka is a multiple rocket launcher produced in India and developed by the DRDO for the Indian Army. The system has a maximum range of 39-40 km, fire a salvo of 12 HE rockets in 44 seconds, neutralizing a target area of 3.9 sq. km. The system is mounted on a Tatra truck for mobility.

Pinaka saw service during the Kargil War, where it was successful in neutralizing enemy positions on the mountain tops. It has since been inducted into the Indian Army in large numbers.


The Indian Army operates the Russian BM-21 'Grad' Launchers. In 1981, in response to the Indian Army's need to a long range artillery system, the Indian Ministry of Defence sanctioned two competence building projects. In July 1983, the Army formulated their General Staff Qualitative Requirement (GSQR) for the system, with planned induction of one Regiment per year from 1994 onwards. This system would eventually replace the Grads.

Development began in December 1986, with a sanctioned budget of Rs 26.47 crore. The development was to be completed in December 1992. Pune-based DRDO laboratory, Armament Research and Development Establishment was the lead laboratory for the development of the system. [ Pinaka MBRL] on]


Pinaka is a complete MBRL system, each Pinaka battery consists of six launcher vehicles, each with 12 rockets, six loader cum replenishment vehicles, three replenishment vehicles, a Command Post vehicle with a Fire Control computer and the DIGICORA MET radar. A battery of six launchers can neutralize an area of 1000 m x 800 m.

Modes of Operation

The launcher can operate in the following modes:

Autonomous mode. The launcher is fully controlled by a fire control computer (FCC). The microprocessor on the launcher automatically executes the commands received from the FCC, giving the operator the status of the system on displays and indicators.

Stand-alone mode: In this mode, the launcher is not linked to the FCC operator, and the operator at the console enters all the commands for laying of the launcher system and selection of firing parameters.

Remote mode: In this mode, a remote control unit carried outside the cabin up to a distance of about 200 m can be used to control the launcher system, the launcher site and to unload the fired rocket pods from the launcher.

Manual mode: All launcher operations including laying of the system and firing are manually controlled. This mode is envisaged in the situations where the microprocessor fails or where there is no power to activate the microprocessor-based operator’s console.

The Pinaka was tested in the Kargil conflict and proved its effectiveness. Since then it has been inducted into the Indian Army and series production has been ordered. The Pinaka MBRL is stated to be cheaper than other systems. It costs Rs 23 million per system compared to the M270 which costs Rs 195 million.

Salient Features

* Use of state-of-the-art technologies for improved combat performance
* Total operational time optimised for shoot & scoot capability
* Cabin pressurisation for crew protection in addition to blast shields
* Microprocessor-based fully automatic positioning and fire control console
* Night vision devices for driver and crew
* Neutralisation/destruction of the exposed troop concentrations, ‘B’ vehicles and other such soft targets
* Neutralisation of enemy guns/rocket locations
* Laying of antipersonnel and antitank mines at a short notice.


The Pinaka project has been a significant success for the DRDO and its development partners in developing and delivering a state of the art, high value project to the Indian Army's demanding specifications. Whilst DRDO was responsible for the overall design and development, its partners played a significant role in developing important subsystems and components. They include TATA Power and Larsen & Toubro Ltd. to state owned Ordnance Factory Board, for the rockets as well as other private and public firms.

First Pinaka regiment was raised on February 2000. Each regiment consists of three batteries of six Pinakas each, plus reserves. [ Indian Army, DRDO Test Pinaka Multi Barrel Rocket Launcher at Chandipur] ] On March 29, 2006, the Indian Army awarded TATA Power's Strategic Electronic Division and Larsen & Toubro's Heavy Engineering Division a contract worth Rs 200 crore (US $45 million), to produce 40 Pinaka MBRLs each. TATA Power declared that it would be delivering the first units within six months. [cite news | authorlink = Press Trust of India | author = Press Trust of India | title = Tata, L&T bag orders for Pinaka rocket launcher | url = | publisher = The Indian Express | date = April 3 2006 | accessdate = 2007-11-15 | quote = ] The Indian Army has placed an indent for Pinaka Weapon System worth Rs 1300 crores. [ [ DRDO Newsletter, January 2008] (PDF)]


The Pinaka will be operated in conjunction with the Indian Army's Firefinder radars and indigenously developed BEL Weapon Locating Radar. The Indian Army is networking all its artillery units together with the DRDO's Artillery Command & Control System, which acts as a force multiplier. The Pinaka units will also be able to make use of the Indian Army's SATA (Surveillance & Target Acquisition) Units which have been beefed up substantially throughout the late 90's, with the induction of the Searcher-1, Searcher-2 and IAI Heron UAVs into the Indian Army, as well as the purchase of a large number of both Israeli made and Indian made Battle Field Surveillance radars. These have also been coupled with purchases of the Israeli LORROS (Long Range Observation and Sighting System) which is a combination of FLIR/CCD system for long range day/night surveillance. [ [ Source: Indian Ministry of Defence] ]

Future Plans

The Pinaka is in the process of further improvement. Israel Military Industries teamed up with DRDO to implement its Trajectory Correction System (TCS) on the Pinaka, for further improvement of its CEP. This has been trialled and has shown excellent results. [ [ IMI - Trajectory Correction System] ] The rockets can also be guided by GPS to improve their accuracy. A wraparound microstrip antenna has been developed by DRDO for this system. [ [ Antenna Development by DRDO] ]

While the Pinaka will not be developed further into a larger system, its success and the experience gained from the program has led the ARDE and its partner organizations, to launch a project to develop a long range MBRL in the class of the Smerch MBRL. A 7.2-metre rocket for the Pinaka MBRL, which can reach a distance of 120 km and carry a 250 kg payload. These new rockets can be fired in 44 seconds, have a maximum speed of mach 4.7, rise to an altitude of 40 km before hitting its target at mach 1.8 and can destroy an area of 3.9 sq km. Integrating UAV with the Pinaka is also in the pipeline, as DRDO intends to install guidance systems on these rockets to increase their accuracy. Development and trials will continue and the rocket is expected to enter service by 2012.

Integrating UAV with the Pinaka is also in the working, as DRDO intends to install guidance systems on these rockets to increase their accuracy.


*Range: 7 km - 40 km (4.4 - 26 mi)
*Rocket Diameter: 214 mm (8.42 in)
*Length: 4.95 m (16.24 ft)
*Warhead weight: 100 kg (220 lbs)
*Total weight: 276kg (608 lbs)

*Fragmentation high explosive
*Anti-Tank and Anti-Personnel minelettes
*Anti-Tank bomblettes

* Based on a Kolos Tatra truck for high mobility. The truck is license manufactured by BEML.
* The truck features a central type regulation system; the driver can adjust the tire pressure to suit the terrain for optimum mobility.
* Two rocket pods per launcher, with a total of twelve rockets between them.
* A total of six launchers per battery.
* Launchers are NBC protected, have their own computerized fire control system, and automatic positioning system.
* The Pinaka system and the launchers are designed for shoot and scoot fire missions thanks to the use of an inertial navigation system SIGMA 30 [cite web | url = | title = India orders SIGMA 95 and SIGMA 30 systems from Sagem Défense Sécurité | accessdate = 2008-05-23 | date = 2008-02-22 | publisher = Frontier India Defence and Strategic News Service ] .
* A battery of six launchers can neutralize an area of roughly 1000 * 800 meters at 40 km range.
* The launcher assembly has electromagnetic elevation and traverse, with traverse being 90º left and right of the centerline and elevation up to 55º

Rate of Fire for a complete salvo from a launcher:
* Approximately 44 seconds.

Salvo Reload time
* 4 minutes.

* 1-2% of range
* Improved substantially when Trajectory Correction System was incorporated.


External links

* [ Pinaka - Bharat Rakshak] Updated: April 02 2006
* [ Pinaka MBRL (PDF)] , DRDO Technology Focus, December 2006 .
* [ Pinaka: First private product ready to fire]
* [ Tata, L&T bag orders for Pinaka rocket launcher]
* [ Gallery of Pinaka prototypes and technical details at]
* [ BEML bags big defence vehicle deal]
* [ Rediff news article on Pinaka test]
* [ Dated article on the Pinaka]


* [ Pinaka MBRL]
* [ Pinaka MBRL] , Times Now, April 9, 2008

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