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BrahMos missile successfully test-fired
January 20, 2009 15:16 IST
Last Updated: January 20, 2009 16:41 IST
India on Tuesday successfully test-fired the nuclear-capable BrahMos missile, with a range of 290 kms, at Pokhran.
The test comes in the midst of heightened tension between India and Pakistan following the Mumbai terror attacks [Images].
Defence Minister A K Antony told reporters in New Delhi [Images] that the test was pre-planned and not directed against any country.
The missile, capable of touching a speed of 2.8 times that of sound, was launched during the trial in its vertical mode, Defence Research and Development Organisation officials told PTI.
Currently, the army has one regiment armed with the BrahMos missile which is different from the version that was test-fired today.
The present round of trials was earlier scheduled for January 17 but was postponed till today. However, the DRDO sources did not specify any reasons for the delay.
During the visit of Russian Defence Minister Anatoly Serdyukov to India late last year, an agreement was reached between the two countries for the development of a hyper-sonic BrahMos missile.
India has also sent two of its latest Su-30 MKI Block III air superiority fighter aircraft recently to Russia for integration of the BrahMos missile on it.
The partner countries also have plans to export the missile to 'friendly' countries. BrahMos missiles' production rate is likely to be increased with the Defence Ministry taking over a Kerala-based Public Sector Undertaking for the purpose recently.
The futuristic BrahMos hypersonic missile will have a speed of Mach 5 with a range of 290 km and will be capable of carrying both nuclear and conventional warheads.
The Indian Army [Images] inducted the BrahMos missile, which is a version different from the one tested today, last year and currently has one regiment armed with them. The Indian Navy platforms inducted the supersonic cruise missiles in 2005.
BrahMos would be the main cruise missile on all of India's future battles ships, be they Destroyers or Frigates. On larger Naval ships, there would be scope for having 16 missiles on board with eight missiles each in two vertical launchers.
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