Context: The new generation ballistic missile ‘Agni Prime’ was successfully flight-tested by Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) from Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam Island off Odisha.
Agni series of missiles
- The Agni series of missiles is a family of long-range, surface-to-surface ballistic missiles that can carry nuclear bombs.
- Developed by: Defence Research and Development Organisation
- There are currently six operational missiles in the Agni series: Agni-I, Agni-II, Agni-III, Agni-IV, Agni-V, and Agni-Prime and one missile is under development (Agni-VI). Each missile has different ranges and capabilities.
- Agni-I is the shortest-range and oldest missile in the Agni family of Indian nuclear-capable missiles. It was first tested at the Chandipur test range, off the coast of Odisha in 1989.
- It is a two-stage solid-fuel missile that can be stored in canisters and transported by road and rail.
- Range: 700 km
- The missile has a specialised navigation system that ensures it reaches the target with a high degree of accuracy and precision.
- Agni-I is used by the Strategic Force Command (SFC) of the Indian Army.
- The Agni-II is a medium-range ballistic missile equipped with two solid fuel stages.
- Range: 2000-2500 km
- They are said to be a component of “credible deterrence” against China and Pakistan.
- Agni-III is a two-stage ballistic missile that can carry nuclear weapons.
- Range: 3500 km
- It is an Intermediate Range Ballistic Missile which uses a two-stage rocket engine powered by solid propellants.
- Range: 4000 km
- It is equipped with state-of-the-art avionics, an accurate Ring Laser Gyro-based Inertial Navigation System, supported by the highly reliable redundant Micro Navigation System for high precision.
- The Agni 5 is the first of its kind inter-continental ballistic missile (ICBM) of India.
- It is a three-stage solid-rocket-powered missile system capable of delivering a 1.5-tonne nuclear warhead.
- Range: exceeding 5000 km
- Agni-V can bring almost the entire Asia, including the northernmost part of China, as well as some regions in Europe, under its striking range.
- The Agni Prime missile is a new-generation advanced variant of the Agni class of missiles.
- The two-stage canisterised ballistic missile has a range between 1000 and 2000 kilometres.
- It is India’s first ‘declared’ MIRV (Multiple Independently-targetable Reentry Vehicles) missiles, and it is 50% lighter than Agni-III.
- Agni-Prime may be launched from train and road and stored for an extended period. It can be used to target enemy ships in the Indian Ocean.
- Agni-VI is a three-stage solid-fuel intercontinental ballistic missile in the early phases of development in India.
- It will be able to launch from both submarines and land and carry independently targetable re-entry vehicles (MIRV) payloads.
- Range: 8000-10000 km