NEW DELHI: The first canister-based trial of the 5,000 km-plus nuclear capable Agni-V long range ballistic missile is likely to take place on January 31.
Incidentally, DRDO chief Avinash Chander, who is often referred to as the 'Agni Man' for developing the Agni series of missiles, will demit office on the same day after his contract as DRDO chief has been terminated by the government.
The rocket will be launched from a mobile vehicle system, sources said adding that pre-mission activities were in full swing at Wheeler Island off the Odisha coast.
"The likely date for the test was decided much before the government decided to terminate his contract. Three days have been set for the launch and it is likely to happen on January 31," a senior DRDO official said.
Sources said the canister launch of the missile is a big boost to the defence forces as it gives "greater mobility and flexibility".
The indigenously developed missile Agni-V is capable of striking a range of more than 5000 km. It is about 17 meter long and 2 metres wide with launch weight of around 50 tonnes.
Unlike other missiles of indigenously built Agni series, the latest one 'AGNI-V' is the most advanced version having some new technologies incorporated with it in terms of navigation and guidance, warhead and engine.