India successfully test-fires Agni-5 missile

Ebony Scott
January 19, 2018

Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Thursday said India has successfully launched ballistic missile Agni-V.

The Agni 5 missile, India's longest range nuclear capable missile took off from the launch pad at Abdul Kalam Island at 0953 hours and started rising exactly the way it was designed for. The Agni-V was sacked early Thursday morning from Abdul Kalam island, formerly known as Wheeler Island, off the coast of Odisha, a state in eastern India.

The Agni-V was last tested on December 26, 2016, which was then described as the fourth and final experimental test of the three-stage missile. The missile is about 17 metres long, 2 metres wide and has a launch weight of around 50 tonnes. This successful test of Agni-5 reaffirms the country's indigenous missile capabilities and further strengthens our credible deterrence. Its last test was held in December a year ago. After an early test of the missile, Du Wenlong, a researcher at the Chinese Academy of Military Science, told the Global Times that the Agni 5 had a strike range of about 5,000 miles, rather than 3,000 miles.

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In a bid to boost its nuclear arsenal, the Indian army is modifying the Agni missile to make it capable of carrying nuclear warheads. With this missile, India joined the US, Russia, the UK, France and China, which boast ICBM capabilities, when it tested its first Agni-V missile in 2012.

According to the Federation of American Scientists, India possesses around 130 nuclear warheads, which is a modest figure compared to the US and Russia who both have several thousand each. All the previous trials were successful. Agni-V surface-to-surface ballistic missile has an advanced ring-laser gyros, composite rocket motors and highly accurate micro-navigation systems and inertial navigation systems.

Other reports by GizPress

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