Interceptor missile to be test-fired today by DRDO

July 25, 2010
Preparation for the test-fire of India's own interceptor missile, likely to be conducted tomorrow at the Integrated Test Range (ITR) off Orissa coast, reached its final stage today.

Range co-ordination work for the proposed trial has been completed and final check-up of the sub-systems are under process, defence sources said.

Scientists of Defence Research Development Organisation (DRDO) are working overtime to see that the proposed trial is successful, they said adding that in March, the tests were put-off twice due to technical problems.

"Aimed at developing a full fledged multi-layer Ballistic Missile Defence (BMD) system, the mock exercise is to be carried out from two different launch sites of the ITR," said a defence scientist.

The whole exercise is just like hitting a bullet with a bullet, he said.

The target, a modified surface-to-surface missile would first be lifted off from a mobile launcher from the launch complex-3 of ITR at Chandipur-on-sea, 15 km from here.

The interceptor, positioned at the Wheeler Island, about 70 km across sea from Chandipur, which gets signals from radars positioned at different points along the Orissa sea coast would track it and then intercept at a definite altitude mid-air.

Yet to get a formal name, this indigenously developed new hypersonic interceptor missile is designed to be engaged in both endo (within 50 km of earth atmosphere) as well as exo (beyond 50 km of earth atmosphere) atmospheric condition.

The seven-meter long interceptor is a single stage solid rocket propelled guided missile, equipped with an inertial navigation system, a hi-tech computer and an electro-mechanical activator totally under command by the data up-linked from the sophisticated ground based radars to the interceptor.

This would be the fourth time for the DRDO to test its intercepting missile. The three previous tests were conducted on November 27, 2006, December 6, 2007 and March 6, 2009 from the Wheeler Island.