BrahMos proves reliability again with successful test-firing from INS Chennai

BrahMos being test-fired from INS Chennai. File

Bengaluru: India on Sunday successfully test-fired BrahMos supersonic cruise missile from Indian Navy’s stealth destroyer, INS Chennai.

According to BrahMoS Aerospace and Ministry of Defence officials, the missile hit the BPT (Battle Practice Target) positioned in the Arabian Sea.

INS Chennai has the enhanced capability of carrying a total of 16 BrahMos missiles in two eight-cell vertical launch systems, besides other sophisticated weapons and sensors.

During Sunday’s launch, the missile penetrated the BPT ship successfully with pin-point accuracy after performing high-level and extremely complex manoeuvres.

“BrahMos as ‘prime strike weapon’ will ensure the warship’s invincibility by engaging naval surface targets at long ranges, thus making the destroyer another lethal platform of Indian Navy,” Dr Sudhir Kumar Mishra, DG, BrahMos, DRDO and CEO & MD of BrahMos Aerospace said.

BrahMos has been jointly designed, developed and produced by India and Russia.

Defence Minister Rajnath Singh and DRDO Chief Dr G Satheesh Reddy congratulated various teams from BrahMos, DRDO and Indian Navy for Sunday’s successful campaign.

Dr Satheesh Reddy said BrahMos missiles will add to the capabilities of Indian armed forces in several ways.

“The test signifies the credibility of BrahMos as an extremely reliable weapon system. It was a repeat performance as the missile was test-fired from INS Chennai in the past as well,” an official said.

Speaking to Onmanorama, a top source confirmed that Sunday’s was the Acceptance Test Firing (ATF) of BrahMos missile.

“This has proved its credentials. We are delighted to see the missile’s accurate performance once again,” the official said.

The Indian Navy had commissioned INS Chennai on November 21, 2016.

The 7,500-ton warship incorporates new design concepts for improved survivability, stealth, sea-keeping and manoeuvrability.

“BrahMos missile having a top speed of Mach 2.8, a very low-cruise altitude of 10 meters at terminal phase and impeccable accuracy, has turned the warship into one of the deadliest platforms of Indian naval fleet,” an official said.

The missile is in service with the Indian Navy since 2005.

On September 30 this year, BrahMos surface-to-surface supersonic cruise missile carrying an indigenous booster and airframe section was successfully flight tested from ITR, Balasore in Odisha.

The last launch paved the way for the serial production of the indigenous booster and other indigenous components of the BrahMos weapon system.

In June this year, the BrahMos air launched cruise missile (ALCM) had received the first ever fleet release clearance (FRC). The ALCM with its proven capabilities for the Indian Air Force thereby became the first indigenous weapon to get FRC.

The FRC paved the way for the IAF squadrons to use BrahMos ALCM during various combat missions.

“BrahMos has become of the most successful story of India’s missile arsenal. Its consistent performance is unmatched,” an official said.

Interestingly, missile scientists have completed the feasibility studies and engineering analysis for the new variant of the missile -- BrahMos NG (next generation).

BrahMos is expected to be integrated into LCA, LCA MK-II & AMCA. BrahMos-NG is expected to be ready in the next four years.

At DefExpo2020 in Lucknow, Dr Mishra had told Onmanorama that BrahMos is looking to upgrade the current engine from 3 to 5 Mach.

“We want to develop a supersonic-hypersonic engine. We want to do the thermal management with some kind of coatings on different components so that they can withstand high temperature. The idea is to provide our armed forces a credible deterrent with hypersonic capabilities,” Dr Mishra had said.