India on Friday successfully test-fired the indigenously built nuclear-capable Agni-I missile, capable of hitting a target at a distance of 700 km, from a test range off the Odisha coast as part of Strategic Forces Command (SFC) training exercise.
The surface-to-surface, single-stage missile, powered by solid propellants, was test-fired from a mobile launcher at 1002 hours from launch pad-4 of the Integrated Test Range (ITR) at Abdul Kalam Island (Wheeler Island).
The trial was “part of training exercise by the Strategic Forces Command of the Indian Army”, defence sources said, noting it was a “perfect launch”.
“The exercise was conducted in a perfect manner and the trial was successful,” they said.
“The launch was undertaken as a part of periodic training activity by SFC to further consolidate operational readiness,” the sources said.
The trajectory of the trial was tracked by a battery of sophisticated radars, telemetry observation stations, electro-optic instruments and naval ships from its launch till the missile hit the target area with accuracy, they said.
The Agni-I missile is equipped with a sophisticated navigation system which ensures it reaches the target with a high degree of accuracy and precision.
The missile, which has already been inducted into the armed forces, has proved its excellent performance in terms of range, accuracy and lethality, the sources said.
Weighing 12 tonnes, the 15-metre-long Agni-I is designed to carry a payload of more than one tonne. Its strike range can be extended by reducing the payload.
Agni-I has been developed by the Advanced Systems Laboratory, the premier missile development laboratory of DRDO in collaboration with Defence Research Development Laboratory and Research Centre Imarat and integrated by Bharat Dynamics Ltd, Hyderabad.
The last trial of Agni-I, conducted on September 11, 2014, from the same base, was also successful.