Nirbhay missile test-fired off Odisha coast

Nirbhay missile test-fired off Odisha coast”

She was optimistic that this successful trial would take India to the select league of nations for possessing the complex technology and sub-sonic cruise missile capability.

Defence sources said powered by a solid rocket motor the nuclear capable missile blasted off from a mobile launcher positioned in the launching complex-III of the Integrated Test Range (ITR) at Chandipur-on-sea at about 11.25 am leaving behind a chain of thick smokes. The missile was also test fired last time in December, 2016.

As per a DRDO scientist, all initial critical operations of the trial such as blast of the sophisticated missile were successful as it moved up in its trajectory. Comparable with America's Tomahawk missile as far as the stealth capability, it can cruise at a speed of Mach 0.8. The missile's guidance, control and navigation system is configured around the indigenously designed Ring Laser Gyroscope (RLG) and MEMS based Inertial Navigation System (INS) along with GPS system. The missile majestically cruised for around 50 minutes and covered a distance of 647 km, he informed. It was guided by a highly advanced inertial navigation system indigenously developed by Research Centre Imarat (RCI).

DRDO Chairman S. Christopher, DG, Aero, C.P. Ramanarayanan, along with other senior DRDO scientists and user representatives from Army witnessed the momentous launch and congratulated the team Nirbhay for making DRDO proud for the long awaited achievement. The data is being retrieved from tracking systems for a detailed assessment, he said. The health parameters of the vehicle are being monitored by indigenous telemetry stations by a team of professionals from DRDO's ITR and LRDE (Electronics and Radar Development Establishment). While in flight, the missile's wings open mid way by the commands generated from the sophisticated on-board computer. All along its trajectories from lift off to splash down, the missile is to be tracked with the help of ground based radars and IAF aircraft.

Coming to the features, the "Nirbhay" missile is a six-metre long two-stage missile that can strike a target 1,000 km away. With a diameter of 0.52 m and wing span of 2.7 m, it weighs around 1,500 kg and can carry warheads up to 200 kg. Its launch weight is about 1500 kgs, the sources said. The first test flight was conducted in March 2013.

The missile had achieved success during the second test in 2014.

The third test, held in October 2015, failed as the missile crashed. The trial of the long-range missile was conducted at the test range in Chandipur along the eastern coast of Odisha. "It traveled along the pre-designated flight path and homed in on the target", defense sources told Sputnik.

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