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India tests Nirbhay cruise missile
Nirbhay cruise missile. © DRDO

India tests Nirbhay cruise missile

India's Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) has reported a successful test flight of the Nirbhay subsonic cruise missile.

India's Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) has announced a successful test flight of Nirbhay, the country’s first indigenously designed and developed long-range subsonic cruise missile which can be deployed from multiple platforms and is designed to carry conventional and nuclear warheads.

The missile was launched from the Integrated Test Range (ITR), Chandipur, Odisha. After separation from its solid booster stage, Nirbhay is designed to cruise at 0.7 Mach, at altitudes as low as 100m, and includes a loiter capability.

DRDO says the flight test fully achieved all the mission objectives from lift-off till the final splashdown. The missile's guidance, control and navigation system is configured around the indigenously designed Ring Laser Gyroscope (RLG) and MEMS based Inertial Navigation System (INS) along with GPS system.

The missile flight lasted 50 minutes and covered a distance of 647km — significantly further than the supersonic Brahmos. The missile was tracked with the help of ground-based radars, and other parameters were monitored by telemetry stations developed by DRDO.

It was the fifth flight test for the Nirbhay ("fearless"), and the first to be declared a full success.

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