THE successful test launch of the interceptor missile system Prithvi Defence Vehicle (PDV) Saturday from Kalam Island off the coast of Odisha, had crucial contribution from three Pune-based laboratories of the Defence Research and Development Organisation. The test is being looked as a major addition to the India’s Ballistic Missile Defence System. Pune-based Armament Research and Development Establishment (ARDE), High Energy Material Research Laboratory (HMERL) and Research and Development Establishment, Engineers (R&DE) have played important roles in the development of the PDV.
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A senior scientist from the DRDO said, “The ARDE has contributed for the warhead of the system, while the HEMRL has contributed for the propellent and the pyro systems of the interceptor missile. The mobile launch vehicle used for the transport and launch of the missile has been developed by the R&DE. These are labs are among more than 10 DRDO establishments across India which have collaborated for the development of the system.”
The scientist added, “This test is a key achievement towards the development of a two-layer missile defence system or missile dome as it called, for the protection of the country from the missiles fired from the enemy countries. Not many countries have this capability.”
ARDE and HEMRL are laboratories from the armament cluster of the DRDO and have been involved in development and research of various missiles in India’s arsenal for warheads, guiding systems, propellents, ignition and stage separation mechanisms. The R&DE (Engineers), on the other has been involved in development of various mobility systems, mechanical devices and robotic systems used by the Indian Armed forces.
Another scientist from DRDO said, “India’s two hostile neighbours — China and Pakistan — are both nuclear armed and have developed missiles carrying nuclear war heads. The system tested Saturday can destroy a target missile 50 km above the earth’s atmospheric layer.”