From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :
Prelims level : Prithvi-II Missile
Mains level : Not Much
Successfully test-fire of indigenously developed, nuclear-capable Prithvi-II Missile was recently held.
- The Prithvi-II surface-to-surface missile has a strike range of 350 km.
- It is capable of carrying 500-1,000 kilogram of warheads and is powered by liquid propulsion twin engines.
- It was inducted into the armory of Indian defence forces in 2003.
- It is a nine-metre-tall, single-stage liquid-fuelled missile.
- The state-of-the-art missile uses advanced inertial guidance system with manoeuvering trajectory to hit its target.
- It is the first missile to have been developed by the DRDO under the Integrated Guided Missile Development Programme (IGMDP).
Other variants of Prithvi
- The Prithvi missile project encompassed developing three variants for use by the Indian Army, Indian Air Force and the Indian Navy.
- The initial project framework of the Integrated Guided Missile Development Program outlines the variants in the following manner:
- Prithvi I (SS-150) – Army version, 150 km range with a payload of 1,000 kg
- Prithvi II (SS-250) – Air Force version, 350 km range with a payload of 500 kg
- Prithvi III (SS-350) – Naval version, 350 km range with a payload of 1,000 kg
Significance of the test-fire
- Developed as a battlefield missile, it can carry a nuclear warhead in its role as a tactical nuclear weapon.
- This is the second such test fire of nuclear capable highly manoeuvrable missile in weeks.