Supersonic Anti-Ship Cruise Missile Successfully Tested By India

Press Trust of India
Balasore, February 12

BrahMos, the supersonic anti-ship cruise missile jointly developed by India and Russia, was successfully flight-tested from an undisclosed location in the Bay of Bengal off Orissa coast on Wednesday.

The test was conducted from a naval ship INS Rajput in the afternoon, defence sources said.

The missile is marginally over eight metres in length, 670 mm in diameter and weighs 3000 kg. It combines the propulsion system and self-homing device of Russia's 'Yakhont' or 'Onyx' system with sophisticated on-board computer guidance developed by Indian defence scientists.

'BrahMos' has a target range of about 290 km with 200 to 300 kg payload or conventional warhead mass depending on the version, the sources said.

Primarily an anti-ship missile, BrahMos also has the capability to engage shore-based radio-contrast targets. It can be fired from multiple platforms - ship, land, submarine and air, the sources said.

Launched from a ship, it can fly up to a height of 14 km at 2 mach speed (twice the speed of sound). It has a preset trajectory, but a sensor on the head detects the target and can change the missile's course to strike up to 20 km from the targetted range.

The missile also has a device to skim at near-surface level.

About 40 Russian scientists along with their DRDO counterparts witnessed today's trial, the defence sources said.

The Indo-Russian joint venture 'BrahMos' (acronym for Brahmaputra and Moscow), which began working in 1998, is behind the missile's development.

India is represented in the project, code named PJ-10, by Defence Research Development Organisation (DRDO) and Russia by the designer NPO Mashinostroyenia.

BrahMos was first test-fired on June 12, 2001 from the ITR launch complex at Chandipur and it was for the first time that the missile was test-fired from a ship, the sources said.