In order to target enemy bunkers hidden behind mountain ranges, an advanced version of the supersonic BrahMos missile is being developed that will have a “near vertical trajectory,” said Dr Sudhir K Mishra, CEO & MD, BrahMos Aerospace on Saturday. The new capability will be tested in 2019.
“Early we used to go for a simple trajectory or a cruise trajectory against a ship. We said, why not make it a vertical dive trajectory and we came out with a vertical dive. Now we are working for a near vertical trajectory that would be very effective against the enemy hidden behind mountains. Not only hidden, but hidden in bunkers behind the mountains,” Mishra said while speaking on the sidelines of a function organised by L&T Defence at Ranoli in Gujarat.
“Two years ago, we conducted a 65-degree steep dive for the missile. We have partly demonstrated the capability and such systems are already getting inducted into the Indian Armed forces. They are already under delivery. What I am talking about is a near vertical dive capability of 90 degrees, which will be able to engage various kinds of targets. This capability we will be testing sometime next year,” he added.
The official from BrahMos Aerospace said that the missile will climb to about 14 kilometers before taking a steep dive. The agency is also developing a lighter version of the missile. “We have conducted a flight test of the air version from Sukoi aircraft… We are working on a drawing board a smaller Brahmos which can be used by LCA or by other aircraft. There is no firm design or order now, but it will be a completely new weapon system and it will take few years to develop,” he added.
Brahmos currently has a range of 300 kilometers and it has been tested for a range of about 415 kilometers. Talking about the indigenisation of the BrahMos missile, Mishra said that about 72 per cent of the missile has been indigenised and the accuracy of the missile has improved from 30-meter to sub-meter accuracy. The Army has inducted three Brahmos regiments, while a dozen ships of Indian Navy are armed with this missile. The IAF has also inducted the land version of the missile, while the air version is expected to be inducted by November this year.