New Delhi: India on Monday successfully test-fired its indigenously developed intercontinental surface-to-surface nuclear capable ballistic missile Agni-V from the Abdul Kalam Island off the Odisha coast in Balasore district.
This is the fourth and final test of the missile that has a range of over 5,000 km covering the whole of China.
Defence sources said that the successful test-firing today will pave the way for user trial of the most potent Indian missile and its eventual induction into the special forces command (SFC).
The successful test firing of Agni V is the result of the hardwork of DRDO & its scientists. I congratulate them. President Pranab Mukherjee congratulated the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) for the successful launch.
"Congratulations DRDO for successfully test firing Agni-V. It will enhance our strategic and deterrence capabilities," Mukherjee said in a tweet.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi tweeted: "The successful test firing of Agni V is the result of the hardwork of DRDO & its scientists. I congratulate them."
It was launched at around 11.05 am from a mobile launcher complex-4 of the Integrated Test Range (ITR), defence sources said.
"We are analysing the test launch after collecting information from radars. The report suggests it is a successful launch," said an official source.
Meanwhile, the DRDO said the launch of Agni-5 is a major achievement for India both in terms of technology and military might. Former DRDO spokesperson Ravi Gupta told news agency ANI that with this missile capabilities, current advisories will not dare to attack India with any nuclear weapon.
Here are a few facts about the missile:
- The Inter-Continental Ballistic Missile (ICBM) Agni-V has the capability to strike targets anywhere in all of Asia and parts of Africa and Europe.
- Agni-V is one of the most advanced missiles, which is capable of striking a target more than 5,000 km. It is about 17 metres long, 2-metre wide and has a launch weight of around 50 tonnes.
- The missile can carry a nuclear warhead of more than one tonne.
- Once the Agni-V is inducted in the Indian military, India will join the super exclusive club of countries with ICBMs alongside the US, Russia, China, France and Britain.
- A lot of new technologies developed indigenously were successfully tested in the first Agni-5 trial. The redundant navigation systems, very high accuracy Ring Laser Gyro based Inertial Navigation System (RINS) and the most modern and accurate Micro Navigation System (MINS) had ensured the Missile reach the target point within few metres of accuracy.
- The high-speed onboard computer and fault tolerant software along with robust and reliable bus guided the missile flawlessly.
- The missile is so programmed that after reaching the peak of its trajectory, it turns towards earth to continue its journey towards the intended target with an increased speed due to the attraction of earth's gravitational pull and its path precisely directed by the advanced on-board computer and inertial navigation system. The atmospheric air rubbing the skin of the missile during the re-entry phase raises the temperature to beyond 4000 degrees Celsius. However, the indigenously designed and developed carbon-carbon composite heat shield continues to burn sacrificially protecting the payload, maintaining the inside temperature below 50 degrees Celsius. Finally, commanded by the onboard computer with a support of highly accurate ring laser gyro-based inertial navigation system, the most modern micro inertial navigation system (MINS), fully digital control system and advanced compact avionics, the missile hit the designated target accurately, meeting all mission objectives.
- The ships located in the midrange and at the target point tracked the vehicle and witnessed the final event. All the radars and electro-optical systems along the path monitored all the parameters of the missile and displayed in real time, the sources said.
- India has at present in its armoury of Agni series, Agni-1 with 700 km range, Agni-2 with 2,000 km range, Agni-3 and Agni-4 with 2,500 km to more than 3,500 km range.
- The first test of Agni-V was conducted on April 19, 2012, while the second test was launched on September 15, 2013, and the third was on January 31, 2015.
- The missile is developed by the DRDO under the Integrated Guided Missile Development Program.
(With Agency inputs)