Balasore, Dec 6 (odisha.in)India rides new high with successfully conducting a test of new supersonic interceptor missile off the Orissa coast, on Thursday.
Defence sources said, as part of the exercise, two missiles were test fired against each other from two different missile test ranges located in Orissa.
While the target missile, a derivative of Prithvi was test fired from Integrated Test Range (ITR) at Chandipur-on-sea at 11 a.m. from a mobile launcher at the launching complex – 3 (LC-3), the second one blasted off 2.40 minutes later from another mobile launcher at LC-4 in the Inner Wheeler Island.
While the missile from the LC-3 was assumed as the attacker, the LC-4 interceptor missile, an “endo-atmospheric” acted as defender.
This test was to observe the operational effectiveness of the indigenously developed a new high-speed interceptor missile dubbed as advanced air defence (AAD).
The incoming target was tracked by long-range tracking radars (LRTRs) which conveyed the threat to the endo-missile battery fitted in Wheeler Island and subsequently the interceptor was fired.
“The trajectory of the interceptor missile was programmed to intercept the other one in mid-air over the Bay of Bengal. Lifted with a roar and plume of smoke the missile destroyed the target missile in the sky about 32 km above the earth. The interceptor however hit the target directly and destroyed it,” said a defence scientist.
The 7.5-meter tall AAD is a single-stage solid propellant powered missile.
Security personnel watching the exercise on the Chandipur beach
Photographs: Hemant Rout
“The system is in fact slightly better than Patriot Advanced Capability – (PAC-3) of the US in terms of interception, altitude and range against incoming ballistic missiles,” said a source.
S P Dash, director of ITR told, “It is a great success for us. We have met all mission objectives.”
In a similar exercise on November 27, last year, an “exo-missile”, called as Prithvi Air Defence (PAD) was used as the interceptor missile.
The aim and objective of the exercise was to test the missile’s ability to provide an air-shield (cover) to important Indian metros against hostile attacks.
Besides, the missile would be moved closer to the Indio-Pak and Sino-Indian borders during crisis or wartime.
More such exercises may be undertaken to validate the complete spectrum of engagement and make it foolproof for the country’s defence preparedness, the sources added.
As a safety measure, the Balasore district administration had shifted 2800 persons including children from six villages near ITR to two temporarily shelters prior to the exercise.
Fishermen of both Balasore and Bhadrak districts also were alerted not to venture out into the sea while cops in six motor boats patrolled along Dhamara coast round the clock.