India successfully tests nuclear-capable ballistic missile Agni-P

Published : December 18, 2021 20:51 IST

The Agni-P being flight-tested from the Dr A.P.J. Abdul Kalam Island, off the coast of Odisha. Photo: PTI

The Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) has successfully flight-tested “Agni-P” (Prime), the new generation, nuclear-capable ballistic missile. The missile, which is an advanced variant of India’s Agni class of missiles, has a range between 1,000 and 2,000 kilometres, weighs half of Agni III and has a new propulsion and guidance system. Incorporated in the Agni P missile system are technologies that have been successfully proven on the 4,000-kilometre-range Agni-IV and the 5,000-kilometre-range Agni-V.

The two-stage canisterised solid propellant ballistic missile with dual redundant navigation and guidance system that can be launched from a rail- and road-based platform and stored for a longer period was test-fired from the Dr A.P.J. Abdul Kalam island off the coast of Odisha on December 18. The Agni P can be stored, transported and deployed across the length and breadth of the country and, thanks to its canisterisation, the missile’s launch time has been greatly improved.

A spokesperson for the DRDO said that various telemetry, radar, electro-optical stations and range ships positioned along India’s eastern coast tracked and monitored the missile trajectory and parameters. Added the official: “The missile followed textbook trajectory, meeting all mission objectives with a high level of accuracy.”

December 18’s flight was the second flight test of Agni-P. The missile was first successfully test-fired by the DRDO last June. The successful flight has proven the reliability of all the advanced technologies that have been integrated into the missile system.

One of the mainstays of India’s nuclear launch capabilities, the Agni series of missiles include Agni-V, an Inter-Continental Ballistic Missile which has a range of over 5,000 km.

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