India on Monday successfully test-fired its indigenously developed nuclear capable Prithvi-II missile twice in quick succession as part of a user trial by the army from a test range at Chandipur in Odisha. The two surface-to-surface missiles which have a strike range of 350 km and are capable of carrying 500 kg to 1,000 kg of warheads were successfully test-fired in quick succession from mobile launcher from launch complex-3 of the Integrated Test Range (ITR) at around 9.35 AM, defence sources said.
A similar twin trial had been conducted on October 12, 2009 from the same base where both tests were successful. The missile is thrusted by liquid propulsion twin engines. It uses advanced inertial guidance system with manoeuvring trajectory to hit its target, they said. The missiles were randomly chosen from the production stock and the entire launch activities were carried out by the specially formed strategic force command (SFC) and monitored by the scientists of Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) as part of training exercise, a defence scientist said.
The missile trajectory was tracked by the DRDO radars, electro-optical tracking systems and telemetry stations located along the coast of Odisha, sources said. The downrange teams on board the ship deployed near the designated impact point in the Bay of Bengal monitored the terminal events and splashdown.
Inducted into Indian armed forces in 2003, the nine-metre-tall, single-stage liquid-fuelled Prithvi-II is the first missile to be developed by the DRDO under the Integrated Guided Missile Development Programme, defence sources said.