Prithvi-II... finally bang on target

After a spate of bad luck with the Prithvi-II missile, the armed forces, in collaboration with DRDO scientists, succeeded in testing two nuclear-capable Prithvi-II missiles within an hour from two mobile launchers at the Integrated Test Range (ITR) off the Orissa coast on Wednesday. Equipped with state-of-the-art guidance system, both the missiles were launched from the launching complex III (LC-III) of the ITR in Chandipur-on-sea, nearly 15 km from Balasore at 8.15 am and 9.15 am. Mounted on two Mobile Tetra Transporter-Erector Launchers (MTL), the indigenously developed surface-to-surface short range ballistic missiles (SRBMs) were launched one after the other. The entire launch procedure was carried out by the Strategic Force Command, while DRDO provided logistic support. “It was a fantastic launch. Two missiles aimed at different targets from the launch point, met all their mission objectives. It was a by the book success,” ITR director S P Dash said. “The tests were conducted as part of the operational exercises. Two naval ships, located at the impact points, tracked and monitored both the missiles hitting the targets very accurately. All the radars and other sensors along the East coast also monitored the missiles’ trajectory parameters,” he said. Defence sources said, both the missiles were taken from the production lot. “The missiles used for the test were randomly picked from the assembly line after production and were launched with inertial navigation system. It has achieved single digit accuracy reaching close to zero circular error probability (CEP),” said a source.

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