BrahMos supersonic cruise missile was successfully test-fired from mobile launcher from Integrated Test Range (ITR) at Balasore (Chandipur), Odisha to validate some new features aimed at increasing its life from 10 to 15 years. The successful test will help in huge savings of replacement cost of BrahMos missiles held in inventory of Indian armed forces. It makes it first Indian missile whose life has been extended from 10 to 15 years.
BrahMos is supersonic cruise missile developed by joint-venture between Russia’s Mashinostroyenia and India’s Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO). It has been named after two rivers Brahmaputra and Moskva (river in western Russia).
It is two-stage missile, the first one being solid and the second one ramjet liquid propellant. It is self-propelled guided missile that sustains flight through aerodynamic lift. It operates on ‘fire and forget principal’. It is capable of being launched from land, sea, sub-sea and air against sea and land targets.
It is claimed that missile has strike accuracy rate of 99.99% and it follows a variety of trajectories like high, high-low, low, surface-skim etc. It is capable of carrying warhead of 300 kilogram (both conventional as well as nuclear) and has top supersonic speed of Mach 2.8 to 3 (roughly three times speed of sound). It is hailed as world’s fastest anti-ship cruise missile in operation.
Its range was initially capped at 290 km as per obligations of Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR). Since India’s entry into the elite club, its range was extended to 450 km and plan is to increase it to 600km. It has been already inducted in Indian Army and Navy. The air-launched version of missile was test-fired in November, 2017 for first time from modified Su-30MKI aircraft, making it world’s fastest supersonic cruise missile to be fired from a combat jet against a target.