The Indian Armed Forces will launch a BrahMos supersonic cruise missile, jointly developed by India and Russia, from a Sukhoi Su-30MKI fighter this fall, an Indian Defense Ministry source said.
“The first stage of the missile test will start at the end of October — beginning of November,” the military source told RIA Novosti, adding that testing will take place in four stages.
Earlier in August, Head of BrahMos Aerospace enterprise Sudhir Mishra said the first flights with a launcher went well and expected the fighter’s first flight with an operational missile to take place by the end of this year.
“After this, a test launch of a mock missile will be carried out, and then final testing with a regular missile from a plane. We hope that this will take place in the beginning of 2016,” Mishra added.
The BrahMos Chief Executive said the supersonic missile’s integration with the Su-30MKI (NATO reporting name Flanker-H) multirole fighter would supply India with a long-range weapon without endangering the aircraft.
“After all, the Su-30 can fly with aerial refueling a distance of about 3,000 kilometers (over 1,800 miles), and the BrahMos’ long range allows to be launched from a safe distance," Mishra stressed. The missile's flight range is 180 miles.
The estimated $425-million supersonic missiles capable of flying at supersonic speeds of up to Mach 3 (over 2,200 mph) are expected to be fitted in three Talwar-class frigates and three Delhi-class destroyers, all built in collaboration with Russia.
The BrahMos short-range supersonic missile was jointly developed by Russia and India and has been in use by the Indian Navy since 2005. The missile has a range of 180 miles and can carry a conventional warhead of up to 660 pounds.
Source: RIA Novosti; File Photo