NEW DELHI, March 20 (Itar-Tass) – India tested the first submarine-launched version of the BrahMos supersonic cruise missile on Wednesday, March 20.
The missile, created jointly with Russia, was tested from a submerged platform in the Bay of Bengal off the coast of Visakhapatnam, BrahMos Aerospace said.
“Creating history, the missile took off vertically from the submerged platform for its full range of 290 kilometres, following a pre-defined trajectory, the missile emerged from underwater, took a turn towards the designated target meeting all mission objectives. All the telemetry and tracking stations, including Indian naval ships positioned throughout the flight path, confirmed the pin-point accuracy of the mission,” the company said in a statement.
This is the first time that any supersonic cruise missile is launched vertically from a submerged platform. "BrahMos vertically installed in a modular launcher in the pressure hull of the submarine will increase the 'offensive power' of the vessel without compromising on its 'defensive power' as the torpedo tubes can be fully utilised for defence. This new variant of the supersonic cruise missile will add more firepower to the Navy’s underwater weapon delivery capabilities," the company said.
BrahMos Aerospace CEO and MD A. Sivathanu Pillai said that “BrahMos missile is fully ready for fitment in P75 (I) of Indian Navy in vertical launch configuration which will make the platform one of the most powerful weapon platform in the world.”
Russia and India will jointly develop the BrahMos-2 hypersonic missile, BrahMos Aerospace Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director Sivathanu Pillai said earlier.
He expressed hope that the BrahMos systems would be used to equip the Russian Navy, too. “We expect BrahMos production to exceed 2,000 in the next 20 years,” he said. Russia and India have decided to create a working group in charge of the development and production of BrahMos-2 missiles.
BrahMos cruise missiles have been adopted by India’s Army and the Navy’s surface ships. The Indian Air Force has also ordered a batch of land-based missiles. Work is also underway to adapt the missile to Su-30MKI planes used by the Indian Air Force.
In early October 2012, the Indian Navy successfully tested sea-launched supersonic BrahMos missiles.
BrahMos is an acronym of the two rivers: Brahmaputra in India and Moskva in Russia.
BrahMos Aerospace Marketing Director Praveen Pathak said the missile could be installed on the Amur-1650 submarine made by Russia’s Rubin Design Bureau, which will bid in the tender, and other vessels.
Russia is ready to offer the Amur-1650 submarine to the Indian Navy. It can be armed with both Club and BrahMos missiles. Club missiles are well known to the Indian sailors and are launched from horizontal torpedo tubes. BrahMos missiles can be put in a separate compartment with vertical launchers.