Thu, 21 Mar 2013 01:24:04 GMT

India tests BrahMos missile from underwater

Bhubaneswar, March 20 (IANS) India Wednesday successfully tested the supersonic cruise missile BrahMos from underwater in the Bay of Bengal off the Andhra Pradesh coast, an official said.

Congratulating the scientists for the successful launch of the missile, Defence Minister A.K. Antony said: "It is a wonderful achievement and a proud moment for India."

"The submarine-launched version of the missile was test-fired at 2.10 p.m. from a submerged platform off the coast of Visakhapatnam," BrahMos Aerospace spokesperson Praveen Pathak told IANS.

"This was the first time that a supersonic cruise missile was launched vertically from a submerged platform," he said.

"The missile took off vertically for its full range of 290 km. Following a pre-defined trajectory, it emerged from water and took a turn towards the designated target, meeting all mission objectives," he said.

"All the telemetry and tracking stations, including Indian naval ships positioned throughout the flight path, confirmed the pin-point accuracy of the mission," Pathak added.

The BrahMos missile can carry a conventional warhead of up to 300 kg. It has a top speed of Mach 2.8, about three times faster than the US subsonic Tomahawk cruise missile. This makes BrahMos one of the fastest cruise missiles in the world.

It 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 Indian army and Navy.

The missile system has been jointly developed by India and Russia.

Chief executive officer and managing director of BrahMos Aerospace A. Sivathanu Pillai said the Brahmos missile is fully ready for fitment in the Indian navy in a vertical launch configuration, which will make it one of the most powerful weapons in the world.

©Indo-Asian News Service

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