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INS Arihant to be fitted with ballistic missiles

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NEW DELHI: INS Arihant, India’s nuclear-powered submarine, will be fitted with India’s own K-15 ballistic missiles that can be launched from under water.

According to the English daily The Hindu, the K-15 missiles, which are already under production, can carry both conventional and nuclear warheads. They have a range of 700 km. They are 10.4 metres tall and weigh 6.3 tonnes each.

“This is a very big capability,” a DRDO official said. “It means we can launch missiles with nuclear warheads from ground, drop nuclear bombs from air and also fire them now from under water.”

A nuclear-powered submarine was a highly complex platform and safety regulations had to be adhered to. INS Arihant will now go for harbour acceptance trials (HATs). Then it will go for sea acceptance trials (SATs). Later it will go down to a certain depth and come up.

“There are hundreds of systems on the boat. They have to work one after another. This is called setting-to-work. The HATs and SATs will last about a year-and-a-half. This is the most difficult period of activity and you have to do it perfectly. Then the K-15 missiles will be fitted into the boat,” said the DRDO official, as per the report.

The project has been named the “Advanced Technology Vessel” (ATV) programme. Vice-Admiral (retired) D.S.P. Varma is the Director-General of the ATV programme.

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