The Indian Army has successfully test fired the Prithvi II nuclear capable missile from launch complex III of the integrated test range (ITR) at Chandipur, off the Odisha coast, India.
Carried out by the Strategic Force Command (SFC) under supervision of the scientists from the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO), the launch achieved all its targeting and technical parametres set out for the training exercise.
An SFC spokesperson said the test launch was carried out as a culmination to a strategic training exercise.
”The aim of this exercise was to validate our readiness by undertaking launches in various contingencies,” the spokesperson said.
Unnamed defence sources were quoted by The Press Trust of India as saying that the missile was randomly selected from the production stock, and its trajectory was tracked by DRDO radars, electro-optical (EO) tracking systems, as well as telemetry stations located along the Odisha coast.
"The downrange teams onboard the ship deployed near the designated impact point in the Bay of Bengal monitored the terminal events and splashdown," the sources added.
The latest trial follows the successful test firings by SFC from the same base on 3 December 2013.
Manufactured indigenously by DRDO under the integrated guided missile development (IGMD) programme, the Prithvi-II is a tactical surface-to-surface short-range ballistic missile (SRBM), designed to accurately intercept targets located at a distance of 350km.
Using an advanced inertial guidance system with manoeuvring trajectory, the 9m-long single stage liquid propelled missile can carry both conventional and nuclear warheads ranging from 500kg to 1,000kg payloads, and also features measures to deceive anti-ballistic missiles.
Originally developed for use by the Indian Air Force (IAF), the missile entered operational service with the SFC in 2003.
Image: Prithvi-II missile lifts off during a routine user trial from the integrated test range in Chandipur, Orissa. Photo: courtesy of DRDO.