India today test-fired the indigenously developed sub-sonic long-range cruise missile Nirbhay from the Integrated Test Range at Chandipur in Odisha at 10.03 AM.
It is the second launch of the indigenous weapon developed by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO).
The missile was test-fired for the first time on March 12, 2013 from the same base. However, the flight had to be terminated mid-way, as deviations were observed from its intended course.
“The missile was test-fired from a mobile launcher positioned at launch pad 3 of the Integrated Test Range at about 10.03 hours,” said an official soon after the flight took off from the launch ground.
“Flight details will be available after data retrieved from radars and telemetry points, monitoring the trajectories, are analysed,” the official said.
India has in its arsenal the 290 km range supersonic “BrahMos” cruise missile which is jointly developed by India and Russia. But ‘Nirbhay’ with long range capability is a different kind of missile being developed by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO).
Nirbhay has good loitering capability, good control and guidance, high degree of accuracy in terms of impact and very good stealth features.
Low-flying cruise missiles such as the Nirbhay can easily slip past enemy air-defence systems due to small radar cross section.
Nirbhay blasts off like a rocket but turns into an aircraft later. It is capable of flying at tree-top level which protects it from being detected by radars.
The missile can carry nuclear warheads and hit targets over 700 kms away.