India successfully test-fired its indigenously built, nuclear-capable Agni-I ballistic missile from a test range off Odisha’s coast as part of a user trial by the army.
The surface-to-surface, single-stage missile is powered by solid propellants and can hit targets 700km away.
The missile was test-fired from a mobile launcher at 9.15am from launch pad-4 of the Integrated Test Range (ITR) at Abdul Kalam Island (Wheeler Island), a defence official said.
The trial that was a part of training exercise by the Strategic Forces Command of the Indian Army was fully successful, the official said.
The sophisticated missile covered a distance of 700km within 9 minutes and 36 seconds, officials said.
“The launch was undertaken as a part of periodic training activity by SFC to further consolidate operational readiness,” the official added.
The trajectory of the trial was tracked by a battery of sophisticated radars, telemetry observation stations, electro-optic instruments and naval ships from its launch till the missile hit the target area with accuracy, officials said.
Agni-I missile is equipped with a sophisticated navigation system that ensures it reaches the target with a high degree of accuracy and precision.
The missile, which has already been inducted into armed forces, proved its excellent performance in terms of range, accuracy and lethality, sources said.
Weighing 12 tonnes, the 15-metre-long Agni-I, is designed to carry a payload of more than one tonne. Its strike range can be extended by reducing the payload.
Agni-I was developed by Advanced Systems Laboratory, the premier missile development laboratory of DRDO in collaboration with the Defence Research Development Laboratory and Research Centre Imarat, and integrated by Bharat Dynamics Limited, Hyderabad.
The last trial of Agni-I, conducted on November 27, 2015 from the same base, was also successful.