Thursday, May 19, 2016

To Counter Pakista's Nasr SRBM India Successfully Test Fires Prithvi-II Tactical SRBM (with video)

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Prithvi-I was a short-range class surface-to-surface ballistic missile with a maximum warhead capacity of 1,000 kg, ranges 150 km. It's CEP is 10-50 metres and can be launched from Transporter erector launchers. This class of Prithvi missile was inducted into the Indian Army in 1994.

Prithvi-II is also a single stage liquid-fuelled SRBM having a maximum warhead mounting capability of 500 kg, but it's range extended to 250 kilometres. It was developed with the Indian Air Force being the primary user. It was first test-fired on January 27, 1996 and the development stages were completed in 2004. This variant has been inducted in to the Army as well. In a recent test, the Missile tested with an extended range of 350 kilometres and improved Aided Inertial Navigation system. 

After a failed test on 24 September 2010 two more missiles were launched on December 22, 2010 which proved to be partially successful. A test firing on 9 June 2011 at the Interim Test Range in Chandipur was successful with the missile reaching an accuracy of better than 10 meters.

Prithvi-III (codenamed Dhanush meaning Bow) is a two-stage ship-to-surface missile. The first stage is solid fuelled with a 16 metric ton force (157 kN) thrust motor. The second stage is liquid fuelled. The missile can carry a 1,000 kg warhead to a distance of 350 km and a 500 kg warhead to a distance of 600 kilometres and a 250 kilogram warhead up to a distance of 750 kilometres. Dhanush is a system consisting of a stabilization platform (Bow) and the Missile (Arrow). 

Supposedly it is a customised version of the Prithvi and that the additional customizations in missile configuration is to certify it for sea worthiness. Dhanush has to be launched from a hydraulically stabilized launch pad. Its low range acts against it and thus it is seen a weapons either to be used to destroy an aircraft carrier or an enemy port. The missile has been tested from the surface ships many times.

Prithvi III was first tested in 2000 from INS Subhadra, 
a Sukanya class patrol craft. The missile was launched from an updated, reinforced helicopter deck of the vessel. The first flight test of the 250 km variant was 
only partially successful. The full operational testing was completed in 2004. The following year in December an enhanced 350 km version of the missile was tested from the INS Rajput and successfully hit a land based target. The missile was again successfully tested-fired from INS Subhadra anchored about 35 km offshore from the Integrated Test Range at Chandipur on December 13, 2009. It was the sixth test of the missile. Up to now this missile has not been deployed largely for logistical deficiencies. 

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