New Delhi: Two years after its commissioning, Indian Navy‘s newest destroyer INS Chennai today validated its arming with the world’s first supersonic cruise missile with a successful test-firing of the Indo-Russian joint venture BrahMos.
The missile, fired from on board the 7,500-tonne warship, hit its intended surface target with test-book accuracy. The missile’s gravity-defying manoeuvres enables it to cruise sea-skimming as low as three to four meters at supersonic speeds, fooling enemy radar and surveillance.
INS Chennai will be a key naval platform for India to enforce a blockade of the sea lanes of communication in the Indian Ocean Region if its current land border military conflict with Communist China in Ladakh escalates to the maritime domain.
“BRAHMOS, the supersonic cruise missile was successfully test fired today…from Indian Navy’s indigenously-built stealth destroyer INS Chennai, hitting a target in the Arabian Sea. The missile hit the target successfully with pin-point accuracy after performing high-level and extremely complex manoeuvres,” a statement from the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) said.
The BRAHMOS as the ‘prime strike weapon’ will ensure the warship’s invincibility by engaging naval surface targets at long ranges, thus making the destroyer another lethal platform of the Indian Navy.
The highly versatile BRAHMOS has been jointly designed, developed, and produced by India and Russia, and enjoys a range of over 290 km, cruising at speeds that are close to Mach 3 (or three times the speed of sound, or 3,700 kmph).
DRDO Chairman and Secretary for the Department of Defence Research and Development Dr G. Satheesh Reddy too joined the minister to appreciate all the personnel involved with the successful launch of the BrahMos missile from on board INS Chennai. “BRAHMOS missiles will add to the capabilities of Indian armed forces in many ways,” Reddy said.
INS Chennai, assigned to the Mumbai-headquartered Western Fleet is one of the largest destroyers in the Indian Navy. Built under Project 15A by the Mumbai-based Mazagon Dock Shipbuilders Limited that was listed on the stock market earlier this month with a successful run, the warship is also armed with Israeli Barak-8 long range surface-to-air missiles.