Saturday, March 7, 2009

India successfully tests BMD

Yesterday India has successfully tested the Ballistic Missile Defence (BMD). It was the third successful test of the BMD. Currently US, Russia and Israel are other countries who are developing capabilities in BMD.
The BMD system of India has been in development by ISRO. It is capable of successfully tracking and destroying hostile missiles both inside(endo) and outside(exo) the atmosphere. The BMD system will be developed in 2 phases. The first stage is targeted for 2000 km range. It is scheduled to be operational by 2011-2012. The second stage is to handle 5000 km range.
India's BMD is as capable as Israeli Arrow-2 BMD system and US Patriot system.
Basically in a BMD shield, radars are used to track a hostile missile. Based on inputs from the radars, interceptor missiles are launched to engage and destroy the hostile missiles. The interceptor used for the test is called Prithvi Air Defence (PAD II). The interceptor was a two-stage vehicle, with the first stage fuelled by liquid propellants and the second stage by solid propellants. It was 10 metres long and weighed 5.2 tonnes.The interceptor used for the first time a manoeuvrable warhead called gimballed directional warhead (GDW), which can rotate 360 degrees.

For details of India's BMW program, you can read the following articles
A really nice article on India's BMW program
Wikipedia page on Indian BMD
Wikipedia page on ABM (Anti Ballistic Missiles)

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