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September 29, 2011

User trial of Agni-II tomorrow

After successful trials of hypersonic missile ‘Shourya’ and medium range ballistic missile ‘Prithvi’-II, defence scientists and the Indian Army are preparing for a user trial of 2,000-km plus range nuke capable missile Agni-II.
Defence sources said the Strategic Forces Command (SFC), a special wing of the Army, will carry out the test on September 30.
Preparation is on at the Wheeler Island off the Orissa coast for the last fortnight for the test launching of India’s first indigenously built Intermediate Range Ballistic Missile (IRBM). �
The test of the missile which was scheduled to be held on August 29 last was aborted due to last minute technical snags in the missile system.
The mission was put off after snags were detected a few seconds before the take off.
The system did not get adequate pressure for ignition following the technical glitch. “Though the pyro was fired in time, required pressure could not be built up for ignition which led the scientists to abort the mission,” it said.
A defence official said the snags have been fixed and this time they were hopeful of success in the Agni-II user trial. “Everything is on schedule. We are planning to conduct the test on September 30 or October 1. The test schedule is subject to favourable weather,” he told this paper.
This was not for the first time that technical snags were detected in the Agni-II system. In 2009 two consecutive attempts for Agni-II trials had ended in failure. On both the occasions the missile had developed technical glitches during the second stage separation.
The two-stage solid propelled Agni-II missile developed by Advanced System Laboratory (ASL) and other DRDO labs has a length of 20 metres, diameter of one metre and weighs around 17 tonnes.
It is designed to carry both conventional and nuclear payload of over a tonne.
The missile is equipped with a state-of-the-art navigation system with modern techniques for taking the missile towards designated target very accurately. The Agni-II version was first test-fired in 1999 from the same location.
This test is considered ‘very crucial’ as it is supposed to give a technical push to the country’s intercontinental missile programme.
India aims to initiate the programme with the maiden test of 5,000-km range nuclear capable missile Agni-V anytime in December.

IBN Live

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