India successfully test-fires nuclear-capable Agni-5 missile, 2nd test in 6-months
India has successfully test-fired nuclear-capable ballistic missile Agni-5, which has a strike range of 5,000km, from Dr. Abdul Kalam Island off the Odisha coast today. This is the seventh trial of the indigenously-developed surface-to-surface missile, defense sources said. Agni-5 is a three-stage missile and is 17 meters tall and 2 meters wide. It is capable of carrying 1.5 tons of nuclear warheads. Read more.
Strategic force command, DRDO scientists conducted the trial: Source
"The missile was launched with the help of a mobile launcher from Launch Pad-4 of the Integrated Test Range (ITR) in the Bay of Bengal. It was a user associated trial. Strategic force command along with DRDO scientists conducted it," the source said.
India has 4 missiles in its Agni missile series
During this trial that took place in Balasore, the flight performance of the missile was tracked and monitored by radars, tracking instruments and observation stations, said the source. India has in its armory the Agni missile series, Agni-1 with a range of 700 km, Agni-2 with a range of 2,000 km, Agni-3 and Agni-4 with 2,500 km to more than 3,500 km range.
Agni-5 most advanced variant in terms of navigation, guidance
The Agni-5 is the latest and most advanced variant in terms of navigation and guidance, warhead and engine. "The high-speed onboard computer and fault-tolerant software, along with robust and reliable bus guided the (Agni-5) missile flawlessly (during the test)," an official said.
The missile, after reaching trajectory's peak, returns to its target
The missile is programmed in such a way that after reaching the peak of its trajectory, it turns towards the earth to continue its journey to the target with an increased speed, due to the earth's gravitational pull, and its path precisely directed by the advanced onboard computer and inertial navigation system. As the missile enters the earth's atmosphere, its temperature increases.
Indigenously-designed heat shield maintains inside temperature below 50 degrees
As the missile enters the earth's atmosphere, the atmospheric air rubbing its outer surface skin raises the temperature to beyond 4,000 degree Celsius. However, the indigenously-designed and developed heat shield maintains the inside temperature at less than 50 degree Celsius. At last, the missile, commanded by the onboard computer, hit the designated target point accurately, meeting all mission objectives, the sources said.
Electro-optical systems monitored the parameters of the missile
The ships located in the mid-range and at the target point tracked the vehicle and witnessed the final event. All the radars and electro-optical systems along the path monitored the parameters of the missile and displayed them in real time.
First two flights of Agni-5 were in open configuration
The first two flights of Agni-5 in 2012 and 2013 were in open configuration. The third, fourth,and fifth launch were from canister integrated with a mobile launcher, which enables the launch of the missile in a shorter time as compared to an open launch. The missile has advantages of higher reliability, longer shelf life, less maintenance, and enhanced mobility.
All 6 trials of Agni-5 successful till now
The first test of Agni-5 missile was conducted on April 19, 2012, the second was on September 15, 2013, the third on January 31, 2015, and the fourth one on December 26, 2016. The fifth test was held on January 18 this year and the last one was held on June 3, 2018. All the trials were successful.