|The Nirbhay probably doesn’t look like this. Only an impression.|
Speculating on a debut missile launch by DRDO is always a long-drawn gamble, but this could be it for the agency’s Tomahawk-like long range cruise missile Nirbhay. With a launch window that opened yesterday off the country’s east coast test range, the missile is expected to be test-fired for the first time tomorrow morning.
Mostly used to a series of ballistic missiles (the BrahMos isn’t really Indian is it?), there is a great deal of justified attention in how an indigenous cruise missile programme will acquit itself. The Nirbhay is said to be a 750-1,000 km range weapon system.
As I’ve posted here before, the Nirbhay, shrouded in secrecy for long, is understood to be a two-stage high subsonic cruise missile with loitering capabilities. Sources suggest that apart from the engine (apparently supplied by NPO Saturn), the rest of the system is fully indigenous.
Let’s hope the test goes through tomorrow, and luck to the test team. More details about the missile in this piece in The Hindu today.