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India tests Agni-IV missile with high accuracy

Tuesday November 15, 2011 02:56:56 PM, IANS

India's Agni-IV 3,500-km-range strategic nuclear-capable ballistic missile blasting off from Wheeler Island in Odisha on the east coast

(Photo: DRDO)

Bhubaneswar/New Delhi: India Tuesday succeeded with a very high level of accuracy in its first test of a new-generation Agni-IV strategic nuclear-capable missile with a 3,500-km range from a defence base in Odisha, an official said.

"The missile, which has the capability to hit targets over 3,000 km away, was tested from a facility off the state's coast in the presence of senior defence officials," defence ministry spokesperson Sitanshu Kar told IANS.

"The test was successful," he added.

The Agni-IV is a modified version of the Agni-II strategic missile and was originally called Agni-II Prime.

"The successful launch of new generation strategic missile Agni-IV that has a designed range of 3,500 km achieved all mission parameters, which included a range of 3,000 km," Defence Research Development Organisation (DRDO) spokesperson Ravi Kumar Gupta told IANS in New Delhi.

"Agni-II Prime has now been renamed Agni-IV," he added.

India's Agni-series missiles are one of the five projects of DRDO under the Integrated Guided Missile Development Programme (IGMDP) launched in 1983 and concluded in 2008 after all its design objectives were achieved.

However, India's IGMDP follow-on projects, such as Agni-IV and the Sagarika submarine-launched ballistic missile, are continuing.

During Tuesday's test, the Agni-IV missile was launched from a Road Mobile System at 9.00 a.m. from Wheelers' Island in the Bhadrak district of Odisha on India's east coast, about 200 km from Bhubaneswar.

The missile had a text-book trajectory and reached a height of about 900 km and reached the pre-designated target in the international waters of the Bay of Bengal, Integrated Test Range (ITR) director S.P. Dash later said in a statement.

All mission objectives were fully met. All the systems functioned perfectly till the end, encountering the re-entry temperatures of over 3,000 degrees Celsius, Dash said.

This missile is one of its kind in the world, giving a quantum leap in technology, he said.

"The missile system has opened a new era in the class of long-range missile having capability to carry strategic warheads for the forces and has provided a fantastic deterrence to the country," he claimed.

The missile is lighter in weight and has two stages of solid propulsion and a payload with re-entry heat shield. The composite rocket motor which has been used for the first time had performed excellently, the statement said.

The missile system is equipped with modern and compact avionics with redundancy to provide high level of reliability, it said.

The high performance onboard computer with distributed avionics architecture and high speed reliable communication bus and a full digital control system controlled and guided the missile to the target, the statement said.

All the radars and electro-optical systems along the coast tracked and monitored all the parameters of the vehicle. Two Indian naval ships located near the target witnessed the final tochdown.





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