The BrahMos family of missiles, developed by the Indo-Russian joint venture BrahMos Aerospace, will soon have a submarine version, A. Sivathanu Pillai, chief executive officer and managing director of the company, said on Friday.
Delivering the 26th Council of Scientific and Industrial Research-National Aerospace Laboratories Foundation Day Lecture, Dr. Pillai said the challenge was to increase the speed of the cruise missiles from the current supersonic (2.8 Mach) to hypersonic levels of 7 Mach.
Dr. Pillai said the speed of the BrahMos missiles, which are to be delivered to the Indian armed forces, was more than three times that of the Tomahawk missiles used by the U.S. armed forces. “These missiles are the only operational supersonic missiles in the world,” he said.
He said the joint venture had orders worth $4 billion. Several Indian companies, including Larsen & Toubro and the Godrej Group, were involved in the production of the missiles, he added.
Host of technologies
A host of technologies would be needed to achieve hypersonic speeds, Dr. Pillai said. New materials, including those having nano characteristics and “self-healing” properties, would be required.
Satish Chandra, Director, Structural Technologies Division, CSIR-NAL, delivered the Technology Lecture.