Bhubaneswar: India Tuesday successfully test-fired the BrahMos supersonic cruise missile from a defence base in Odisha, an official said. It has a range of 290 km and can carry a conventional warhead of up to 300 kg.
The missile was launched from the Integrated Test Range in Chandipur in Balasore district, about 230 km from here.
"The test was successful. It was a land version of BrahMos. It was done with a total indigenous airframe," M.V.K.V. Prasad, director of the test range, told IANS.
The missile, developed by the Indo-Russian joint venture BrahMos Aerospace, has a top speed of Mach 2.8, which is about three times faster than the US subsonic Tomahawk cruise missile. This makes BrahMos one of the fastest cruise missiles in the world.
The missile can be launched from submarines, ships and aircraft. Sea and ground launched versions of the missile have been successfully tested and put into service with the army and the navy.
During the latest launch, the missile flew through the designated 290 km distance at speed of Mach 2.8 and achieved high precision with steep dive, BrahMos Aerospace spokesperson Praveen Pathak said in a statement.
"This was the 44th launch of BrahMos which was carried out with high level of reliability," he said.
BrahMos Aerospace chief A. Sivathanu Pillai confirmed that it was a text book launch achieving 100 percent results, executed with high precision from the Mobile Autonomous Launcher (MAL) prepared by the BrahMos 3rd regiment of Indian Army team.
The missile's successful launch will give a boost to the ongoing programme of future installations of BrahMos system in the Indian Army against hidden land targets for mountain warfare operations, he said.
The launch of the air-version of BrahMos missile integrated with frontline combat planes Su-30MKI will be carried out by the end of this year, he said.