Missile lifts off from Wheeler Island and travels its entire range of 2,000 km
The Strategic Forces Command (SFC) of the Army successfully test-fired Agni-II ballistic missile at 10.25 a.m. on Sunday. It lifted off from a mobile launcher on Wheeler Island, off the Odisha coast, and travelled its entire range of 2,000 km before splashing into the targeted area in the Bay of Bengal, with an accuracy of a few metres. It was a perfect mission which saw no “holds” and the entire flight lasted more than 10 minutes.
Agni-II, which is capable of carrying nuclear warheads, is 20 meters long and weighs 17 tonnes. Its two stages are propelled by solid fuel. It can carry a payload weighing one tonne. The missile has been developed by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO).
“Everything went off well. Radars on the coast tracked the missile’s trajectory,” said informed DRDO officials. Electro-optical systems monitored the flight. “Two ships located down range saw everything, including the final event of the missile’s splashdown,” they added. Its fully indigenous, highly accurate navigation systems took it to a few meters of the targeted location.
V.K. Saraswat, Scientific Adviser to the Defence Minister; Agni-II Programme Director Avinash Chander; Project Director D. Lakshminarayana; Director of Advanced Systems Laboratory in Hyderabad V.G. Sekaran; Associate Director of Research Centre, Imarat, G. Satheesh Reddy; Director of Integrated Test Range, M.V.K. V. Prasad; Director of Terminal Ballistics Research Laboratory, Chandigarh, Manjit Singh; and Army officers witnessed the launch.
Mr. Antony congratulated the DRDO and the Army on the successful flight.
Agni-I, Agni-II and Agni-III have already been inducted into the Army.