More reasons for China to feel cornered and petrified as, after the successful test-firing of Agni V, India is contemplating to test its longest range submarine-launched ballistic missile – K-4 – which has the capability of delivering nuclear warhead over a range of 3,500 km.
According to sources, The Defence Research and Development Organization (DRDO) is planning to test-fire the same from an undersea platform in the Bay of Bengal by the end of this month.
The source said:
“The platform is being readied for the test. If everything goes as per the programme, the weapon system, which has caught the attention of enemy nations, will be tested as per schedule.”
However, it is yet to be ascertained whether the test would be conducted from a submerged pontoon or right from the indigenously developed submarine INS Arihant though the platform has to be nearly 30 feet below the surface of the sea.
The source further informed that once the testing platform is ready, the naval ships and tracking systems will slowly be moved to the area. This test would be the third of its kind though the earlier two tests had been kept under wraps by the DRDO.
This project was kept amidst much secrecy till March, 2014. According to the sources at DRDO, this missile will be world’s best in its class though it will have to go through few more development trails before being inducted in the defence.
This intermediate range Submarine Launched Ballistic Missile (SLBM) is around 12 meters in length and has a diameter of 1.3 meters. Powered by solid rocket propellant, this SLBM has a capacity to carry 2,000kg of load and has an intrinsic weight of 17 tonnes.
The source added:
“This time an advanced variant of the missile will be tested to validate new technologies incorporated in the system. The test would be for a higher range also.”
If tested successfully, India’s position in the exclusive club of six nations – which have capabilities of firing nuclear tipped missiles from undersea, land and air – will be strengthened. The other nations in this elite club are Russia, UK, France, USA and China.
According to a defence scientist, this missile has the capability of cruising at a hypersonic speed and has an innovative system of interlacing three dimensions.
He further said:
“This exceptional feature of the weapon system makes it difficult to be tracked easily and destroyed by any anti-ballistic missile defence system. The missile has a high accuracy of near-zero circular error probable (CEP).”