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Agni-5 to be ready for induction in armed forces by next year

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Agni V test firing. A DRDO photo

NEW DELHI (PTI): The Agni-5 intercontinental ballistic missile, which has a strike range of more than 5,500 km, is expected to be ready for induction into the armed forces by next year after completion of development trials, DRDO chief Avinash Chander said on Friday.

The head of the defence research agency also said that sea trials of the indigenously built nuclear submarine INS Arihant would begin in the next "one or two months" and the under-water missile BO-5 would be fired from it during that process.

Addressing a press conference at the Defexpo-2014, Chander said the Agni-5 ballistic missile is expected to be ready for induction by the next year.

"It will take two-three more trials for the completion of the development trials. These trials are expected be completed within one year. We are going to do the trials from canisters this year. After few trials it will be ready for induction," he said.

The three stages, solid propellant missile has already been test-fired twice from a mobile launcher from the launch complex-4 of the Integrated Test Range (ITR) and have been highly successful.

The indigenously developed missile Agni-V is capable of striking a range of more than 5000 km. It is about 17 meter long and 2 metres wide with launch weight of around 50 tonnes.

Unlike other missiles of indigenously built Agni series, the latest one 'AGNI-V' is the most advanced version having some new technologies incorporated with it in terms of navigation and guidance, warhead and engine.

In the Agni series, India at present has Agni-1 with 700 km range, Agni-2 with 2000 km range, Agni-3 and Agni-4 with 2500 km to more than 3500 range.

Commenting on the trials of INS Arihant, Chander said the vessel will be launched for sea trials within a month or two and it will be firing the indigenous BO-5 missiles, which have a range of around 700 km.

He said the development trials of the BO-5 missile were completed in January 2013 and it is ready for being fully integrated with the indigenous nuclear submarine.

On the Ballistic Missile Defence system, he said the first test of the frozen configuration will be tested within a month's time.

To a query on India's anti-satellite capability, the DRDO chief said the kill vehicle (missile) of the BMD along with the launcher of the Agni missile can be used for demonstrating this capability but so far, the country does not want to showcase it as it is against having debris and other unwanted materials in space.

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