India on Monday successfully test-fired its nuclear capable, long range, strategic ballistic missile Agni-IV with a strike range of 4,000 km from a test complex off the coast of Odisha.
“Long range ballistic missile Agni-IV was successfully flight tested at 9.45am from Dr APJ Abdul Kalam (Wheeler) Island launch complex,” said Defence Ministry spokesperson Sitanshu Kar.
Agni-I, II and III and Prithvi missiles are already in the arsenal of the armed forces, giving them a reach of over 3,000 km, providing the country with an effective deterrence capability.
“The mission met all objectives as monitored and confirmed by the telemetry, Electro-optical stations, Radar stations along the coast,” the spokesperson said.
The surface-to-surface Agni-IV is a two-stage missile. It is 20 metres long and weighs 17 tons. “The sophisticated surface-to-surface missile is equipped with modern and compact avionics to provide high level of reliability,” DRDO officials said.
Down range ships positioned at the target point monitored the terminal event, the spokesperson said on Twitter, adding that Project Director Tessy Thomas led Monday’s launch operations. This was the fifth trial of the Agni-IV. The last flight test, also conducted by the strategic force command (SFC) of the Indian Army as part of user trials on December 2, 2014, was successful, defence sources said.
Agni-IV missile is equipped with state-of-the-art Avionics, a fifth generation on-board computer and distributed architecture. It has the latest features to correct and guide itself for in-flight disturbances.
An extremely accurate Ring Laser Gyro-based Inertial Navigation System (RINS) and a highly reliable redundant Micro Navigation System (MINGS) ensure the vehicle reaches the target within two-digit accuracy, they said. The re-entry heat shield can withstand temperatures in the range of 4000 degrees Celsius and makes sure the avionics function normally with inside temperature remaining less than 50 degrees Celsius, they said.