Agni-5, India’s first 5,500-km Inter-Continental Ballistic Missile (ICBM) with a capability to strike as far as Beijing and Shanghai in China, will be ready for induction into the armed forces by 2015 after a couple of more trials this year.
Simultaneously, indigenous nuclear-powered submarine Arihant will go out to the sea for trials in a couple of months when the first locally-made Submarine Launched Ballistic Missile (SLBM) will be test fired, ahead of their induction in 2015. “It will take two-three more trials for the completion of the Agni-V development trials. These trials are expected be completed within a year. We are going to do the trials from canisters this year. After a few trials, it will be ready for induction,” DRDO chief Avinash Chander said at a press conference on the sidelines of DefExpo-2014. The three-stage solid propellant missile was tested successfully twicefrom a mobile launcher off Odisha coast in the last two years.
The 17-metre-long and 2-metre-wide missile has a launch weight of around 50 tonnes and is the most advanced version, with new features incorporated with it in terms of navigation and guidance, warhead and engine. On Arihant, Chander said it would begin sea trials in the next “one or two months” and its harbour acceptance trials are over. The 700-km ‘BO-5’ SLBM would be fired from it during the sea trials, he added.
He said BO-5 development trials were completed in January 2013, all of them under-water tests, and hence its next tests would be done with the indigenous nuclear submarine before its full integration on to the vessel.