Two nuclear-capable, medium range surface-to-surface Prithvi-II missiles were successfully test-fired within minutes of each other by the armed forces from the Integrated Test Range, Chandipur, Balasore off the Orissa coast on Monday.
According to Defence Research and Development Organisation sources, both the missiles had a range of 350 kms and were launched as part of the operational exercises by the Strategic Force Command. The missiles were fired from the launch pads at ITR around 10.30 hrs.
Both the missiles met the full mission objectives, the sources added. The missiles were flight-tested against two different targets which were located 350 kms away from the launch pads.
Two naval ships anchored at target points tracked and monitored the missiles hitting the targets accurately, while the radars and electro-optical systems located along the East Coast monitored the flight path along the trajectory. The missiles were picked from the stock of Strategic Force Command.
The nine-metre tall Prithvi-II is a single stage liquid fuelled missile and has a diameter of one metre. It is capable of carrying a 500 kg warhead.
DRDO had developed three variants of Prithvi to meet the requirements of the Army, Air Force and Navy (Dhanush). The project was the first to have been developed under DRDO’s Integrated Guided Missile Programme and was initiated when former President A.P.J.Abdul Kalam headed the organisation.
Scientific Advisor to Defence Minister, V.K. Saraswat, Lt. Gen Nagal, C-n-C Strategic Forces Command, Advanced Systems Laboratory Director, Avinash Chander, CMD Bharat Dynamics Ltd, Khetarpal and others witnessed the test-firing.