First night trial of Prithvi II missile successful

India on Wednesday successfully conducted a night trial of its indigenously-developed, nuclear capable Prithvi-II missile. The surface-to-surface missile is primarily a battlefield weapon, with a strike range of 350 km. Prithvi-II was successfully test fired on February 7; with this night trial, its operative capabilities were confirmed.

Prithvi-II missile is capable of carrying 500 to 1,000 kg of warheads. It is thrusted by liquid propulsion twin engines. It has a strike range of 350 km and it uses advanced inertial guidance system with manoeuvring trajectory to hit its target. With this feature, it can launch accurate attack on its target.

A unique method was employed to conduct the test. A unit was chosen randomly from the stock and the entire process was carried out by Strategic Force Command (SFC) of the Army. DRDO scientists monitored the test. The missile trajectory was tracked by radars, electro-optical tracking systems and telemetry stations by the DRDO.

Prithvi II class is also a single-stage liquid-fueled missile having a maximum warhead mounting capability of 500 kg, but with an extended range of 250 km (160 mi). It was developed with the Indian Air Force being the primary user. It was first test-fired on 27 January 1996 and the development stages were completed in 2004. This variant has been inducted into the army as well. In a test, the missile was launched with an extended range of 350 km (220 mi) and had improved navigation due to an inertial navigation system. The missile features measures to deceive anti-ballistic missiles.

The missile can carry a payload of 500-1000 kg. It can carry both conventional and nuclear warheads. It was developed by the DRDO under its Integrated Guided Missile Development Programme. The missile was inducted into the armed forces in 2003.