Nuclear weapons-capable, surface-to-surface Prithvi-II missile on Thursday was successfully flight-tested for its full range of 350 km by the Strategic Forces Command (SFC) personnel.
The nine-metre tall Prithvi-II, the first indigenously built surface-to-surface strategic missile, was fired from a mobile launcher from Launch Complex-III at the Integrated Test Range at Chandipur in Orissa. It achieved a high degree of accuracy and zeroed-in on the pre-designated target in the Bay of Bengal with a CEP (Circular Error Probability) of less than 10 meters.
The flight test met all the mission objectives and was like a text-book launch.
A battery of radars, electro-optical telemetry stations and a naval ship located near the impact point tracked and monitored the entire event, including the missile's trajectory and final splash down.
The missile was picked up randomly from the production lot and the launch operations were carried out by SFC personnel and monitored by scientists of the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO).
The single-stage, liquid-fuelled Prithvi-II that is capable of carrying payloads ranging from 500-1,000 kg had been inducted into the armed forces. It is equipped with a high accuracy inertial navigation system with sophisticated on-board control and guidance. It could be launched from anywhere with its mobile launcher having user-driven features.
Scientific Advisor to Defence Minister V.K. Saraswat, who witnessed the launch, congratulated the armed forces and scientists for the successful flight-test. V.L.N. Rao, programme director, AD, S.K. Ray, Director, Research Centre Imarat and top officials of the SFC and DRDO were present during the mission.
In December last, two Prithvi-II missiles were successfully test-fired for different ranges within a span of one hour.