India's Nuclear-Capable Agni-I Missile is all set for Army’s First Training Trial


Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Chandipur trial set for Friday will lead to operationalisation and induction of short-range missile.

New Delhi: The Indian army will, for the first time, validate its standard operating procedures and drills on a nuclear-capable missile by test-firing the Agni I at the Integrated Test Range (ITR) in Chandipur this Friday.

The first “training trial” of the Agni I missile will lead to its full operationalisation to complete its induction process into the service, sources confirmed, adding that great strategic importance is being attached to the test as it will determine the procedures and time required to launch a nuclear missile by the armed forces.

The Agni I, which can deliver a nuclear payload deep into Pakistan without being deployed at the border due to its range of over 700 km, was inducted into the Army in 2004 after over a decade of development trials by the Defence Research and Development Organization (DRDO). This short-range ballistic missile can be launched from both a road-based system and a broad gauge rail launcher system.

India has already issued notices for diverting civilian air traffic in the region in anticipation of the launch.

The notice specifies that “over flight restrictions” are being imposed in the area from 9 am to 5 pm on Friday, Saturday and Sunday as an “experimental flight vehicle” will be launched from the ITR complex.

The training trial comes months after a similar test was carried out on the short-range Prithvi missile in May to validate standard operating procedures of the Army’s special missile groups. The Army’s “334 missile group” currently operates Agni I missile while the Prithvi missile has been inducted into the “333 missile group.”

The Agni II intermediate range ballistic missile (IRBM), with a range of over 2000 km, has been inducted but its training trials are pending. The Agni III, with a range of over 3,500 km, needs to be tested “several more times” before induction.

Environmental Survey Vehicle developed by DRDO handed over to Indian Navy


Tuesday, Oct 02, 2007

NEW DELHI: An Environmental Survey Vehicle (ESV) developed by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) was formally handed over to the Navy here on Monday. DRDO chief M. Natarajan handed over the ESV to Vice-Chief of Naval Staff Vice-Admiral Nirmal Verma at a function at the DRDO headquarters.

Laboratory on wheels
Designed and developed by the Defence Laboratory, Jodhpur, the ESV is a radiological laboratory on wheels and equipped with state-of-art instruments. It is capable of estimating radioactivity in field conditions in solid, liquids and air.

Suitability of eatables
The ESV will help certify the suitability of eatables and drinkables in field conditions from the radiation safety angle for coastal areas.

It is also capable of measuring alpha, beta and gamma radiation quantitatively and qualitatively at even very low levels of radioactivity.

This will facilitate early detection of any unusual increase in radioactivity in the area.

The ESV is also capable of detecting any intentional or unintentional release of radioactivity in the marine environment.

DRDO’s Varunastra to be ready by 2009 to be inducted in the Indian Navy


The NSTL built lethal torpedo will target ships and has a range of up to 30 km.

VISAKHAPATNAM: ‘Varunastra’ an electric torpedo being developed by the Naval Science and Technological Laboratory (NSTL), will be ready by 2009.

The torpedo will target ships and will be the first heavyweight to be inducted into the Navy. The 7.6 m, 1,500 kg torpedo will be more lethal and has a range of up to 30 km.

A new autonomous underwater vehicle (AUV) will be fully developed in two years. Once developed, the 1.5 ton AUV will be able to carry a payload of 500 kg.

The vehicle will have an ‘intelligent’ system and will be self-propellant and can also hover at a particular spot but the enemy cannot detect it. Like an unmanned aircraft, it will intercept the target. A Thermal Tarpedo is also indigenously developed at the NSTL.

These are some the new developments explained to a team of reporters on a visit for ‘A day at NSTL’ organised as part of the new public relations policy of the DRDO.

NSTL Director V. Bhujanga Rao and Principal Associate Director S.V. Rangarajan took the team around and explained some of the unique R&D facilities at the laboratory.

The High Speed Towing Tank is a premier research facility for carrying out studies on the hydrodynamic performance of ships, propellers and submerged bodies through model experiments. The cavitation tunnel tests propellers, torpedoes and weapons in simulated underwater conditions.

The tests validate designs and modify them for ships, submarines and torpedoes. The pump jets being made for submarines are manufactured only by the U.S., the U.K. and Russia. “This facility can take care of needs for the next 50 years. New trials will improve efficiency. It is open for one or two other countries too as well,” said Mr. Bhujanga Rao.

The Shock, Noise and Vibration Centre is specially designed to carry out underwater explosions. It is the only one of its kind in the country.

The process called “ruggedisation” will measure the impact of explosion on ships and what kind of damage it could cause. Ships will be equipped with rubber mounds to withstand the shock of the explosion.

The Acoustics Test Centre of the NSTL has an anechoic room with wedges of 1.5 m all around. It’s ‘room within a room’ where the sound level is as low as 25 decibels. It is used to identify where sound comes in equipment and reduce it using a robotic arm.

LCA is India`s numero uno project


Bangalore, Sept 27: Asserting that the Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) is India's numero uno project, Vice Admiral (retd) Raman Puri said that we must succeed in inducting these aircraft into armed forces.

"Capabilities in aviation technology are extremely important in the component of national power," Puri said while delivering a lecture on strategy for indigenous capability building in aeronautics at HAL here.

"Can we possibly make claims in this sense to be an air power without operating a single fighter aircraft of our design. LCA, therefore, is today to my mind a numero uno project and succeed in its induction, we must," he said.

Puri said, technology component of the training of military commanders and those engaged in high defence management does not enable them to realise early in their careers that one key feature of future military requirements is that these cannot be based on a mere "read across from foreign concepts of deterrence--either conventional or nuclear--or from foreign theatres of conflict or combat experience."

Therefore a "reverse conceptualisation" approach to defining technological features of future operational requirements is foredoomed not only to domestic technological unachievability but also to large mismatches between actual theatre requirements and operational performance of composite man-machine systems deployed in these theatres, he noted.

"Such technological features have, therefore to be generated from a deep domestic s and t effort, with its foundational r and d being explored and performed by young people in our academic institutions--and not derivately arrived at from reverse conceptualisation, much less reverse engineering philosophy", he said.

"What we have today in a sense is a system which defines our needs based on what one may call the 'the best of brochure claims'-- the finely honed art of combining the most extremely capable features of an equipment as claimed in glossy brochures of different foreign weapon developers into the minimum acceptable specifications as the 'goal' or 'staff target' for domestic R & D-cum-production," Puri said.

"We need to recognise that what has to be organised for is the ability to deploy military capability along the locus of engagement with the enemy--the weapon, equipment or engagement techniques are means by which that ability is exercised".

The acquisition of these means is not an end goal in itself. The locus of engagement will, in turn `refigure' with changes in military doctrine. This requires our developing the necessary capabilities to conceptualise our mission needs in the first place, he said.

India therefore must seek, nurture and strengthen scientific and technologic expertise, wherever they currently are or where they can most beneficially be augmented, he said.

Speaking about the "triple trap" -- he said what is developed abroad will not suit our requirements, what is suitable will be denied and what is not denied will be unaffordable and called for efforts to achieve self reliance.

Though there has been a dramatic growth in the civil aviation industry, the industry is dependent on aircraft and maintenance services sourced from developed countries, resulting in a huge net ouflow of foreign exchange, he said.

He also pointed out that despite the boom, while Boeing is talking about flat earth airplane and airbus following the model, the manufacturing work on these aircraft coming to India is virtually nil.

DRDO’s Agni missile variant having range of 5,000 km to be inducted in Indian defence services within 4 years

DRDO’s Agni missile variant having range of 5,000 km to be inducted in Indian defence services within 4 years


Jalandhar (Punjab), Sep 26 2007

The next variant of Agni having a range of 5,000 km will be inducted into the armed forces withing four years, a senior DRDO scientist said today.

"The next variant will also be fully indigenous and will be able to strike at over 5000 km range besides carrying heavy payloads ... It would be a multiple warhead missile with a capacity to carry four to 12 warheads," Advanced System Laboratory Director Avinash Chander said here.

He was speaking at a talk on "Technology management for integrated guided missile programme with special reference to Agni intercontinental missile" at the DAV Institute of Engineering and Technology.

He said the system would be meticulously designed so that the missile's direction and target could be changed in air.

"We are trying to attain an accuracy level of 100 metres," he said.

The Agni variant will be three-stage solid propulsion with road mobility with composite rocket motors, he said.

Indian nuclear submarine project making fast progress

Indian nuclear submarine project making fast progress


Saturday, September 22, 2007

NEW DELHI: The defence establishment is making stunning progress in developing its underwater ability to launch nuclear missiles, the most assured means of launching weapons without enemy detection.

The development of a nuclear submarine and nuclear-capable missile would result in India joining an exclusive club of five countries. The most potent ability in the nuclear triad — the other two being land and air based nuclear capability — the underwater capability is much closer to realisation than known in public, informed several sources across the military establishment.

Three simultaneous developments are the reasons why optimism is brimming in military circles. First, the indigenous project called Advanced Technology Vessel (ATV) is fast moving towards sea trial. Secondly, the submarine launched ballistic missile project named Sagarika is getting ready for a full-system test in a couple of months. And thirdly, a nuclear submarine leased from Russia is expected to join the Indian Navy by the middle of next year.

According to a source privy to the progress of the project, by 2009 the submarine would be ready for sea trials. Several sources in the military establishment have told DNA that India’s nuclear submarine project is making progress quicker than ever.

The land-based trials of its nuclear reactor, which would fuel the submarine, in Kalpakkam was successful. A hull for the submarine developed by Larson and Turbo is in Vishakapatnam, where the final integration would take place.

Meanwhile, a team of military scientists is getting ready for a test of Sagarika, now codenamed K15, a submarine launched ballistic missile which can be fired from ATV. The missile has a range of 300 kilometers and scientists are hopeful of extending it to 500 kilometers.

The test would bring India closer to its military goal of completing the nuclear triad. The full-system test has to be carried out by January end, before the Bay of Bengal turns turbulent.

What will further add to the efforts would be the arrival of a Russian nuclear submarine on lease for India Navy. The Akula-II class nuclear submarine is expected to be handed to the Indian Navy in June next year.

The submarine would be on lease for a decade, and would be the second time that Indian Navy would get to actually use a submarine run on nuclear power. The first time was in 1988, when India leased for three years a Charlie-I class submarine named INS Chakra.

Indian defense forces place Rs 2,000 crore orders for specialised anti-nuke equipment and systems

Indian defense forces place Rs 2,000 crore orders for specialised anti-nuke equipment and systems


Trichy, Sep 21,2007

India's armed forces have placed orders worth over Rs 2,000 crore for specialised equipment and systems to prepare the country against nuclear, biological and chemical weapon strikes.

The equipment and systems to be purchased on fast track, include gear to protect against nuclear and chemical radiation, systems to detect any early threat of nuclear and biological weapons and an advanced medical management system to deal with nuclear fall out, top defence scientist W Selvamurthy said.

"These products are being produced by 30 DRDO and ordnance factories and would be supplied within a period of one year," Selvamurthy, who is the Chief Controller, Research and Design in DRDO told reporters on the sidelines of the annual conference of the Indian Association of Biomedical Scientists here.

He said the products also include nuclear shelters, specialised protective clothing, ruggedised combat weapons, medicines and preventive drugs.

Over 300 top scientists from across the world are participating in the three-day conference that began yesterday.

Selvamurthy also said that DRDO had produced Di-Ethyl Phenyl Acetamide (DEPA) -- which can be used both as body or room spray -- to fight epidemics like chikungunya and dengue fever.