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India’s Missile Programme

India’s Missile Programme

Set –Up : India’s Integrated Missiles Development Programme (IGMDP) was started in  1982-83 by the Defence Research and Development Organization (DRDO) under the Chairmanship of Dr A.P.J Abdul Kalam, who developed the Satellite Launch Vehic le (SLV-3) for the space research programme. The work is carried out at the Defence Research Development Laboratory (DRDL) located at Hyderabad.

India has so far developed five missiles, viz.: Agni, Prithvi, Trishul, Nag and Akash.

  1. Agni

Type : Surface-to-surface ballistic missile

Range : 1200-2000km

Aim : To test the performance of an indigenously built heat-shield (a hardware in  weapon delivery system)

Test Launch : First successful test launch was made on May 22, 1989 from Chandipur (Orissa) India is the first country to have developed  this type long-rang missile after USA, Russia, France  and China.

  1. Prithvi

Type : Surface-to-surface battlefield missile

Range : 150km with 1000 kg  warhead and 250km with 250 kg warhead.

Aim : To hit a target without the help of the Air  Force

Test Launch :  The first test launch was made on February 25. 1988 from Rocket Launching Centre, Sriharikota. Second and third launches were made on September 27, 1989 and February 11, 1991, respectively. The fourth test launch was  made on May 5, 1992 from Chandipur. After 10th and 11th test launches in 1993, it has been inducted in the Army..

  1. Trishul

Type : Low-level-quick reaction  surface-to surface missile

Range : 500 m to 9 km (short range)

Aim :  Developed for all the three defence services—Army and Air Force will use it against low flying objects and Navy will use its modified version against sea-skimming missiles.

Test Launch  :  The first launch was in September 1985. Till 1991 more than 10test launches were made.

  1. Nag

Type:  Anti-tank guided missile—Fire and forget

Range : 4km

Aim : Developed to counter contemporary advance in tank armour. It is most advanced missile of its kind in the world. The system is to be inducted to complement French acquired anti-tank missile ’MILAN’.

Test Launch : First test flight was made in  1988. Second test flight was made in June 1990.

  1. Akash

Type : Medium range surface-to-air missile

Range : 25km

Aim : A futuristic missile designed to  defend large installations like oilfields, etc., against enemy air attacks. State-of-the-art technologies developed for missile programmes and other high-tech systems are also  being channelized to make available to the common-man  biomedical equipment at a fraction of the prevailing price of imported systems.


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