Ari­hant suc­cess­fully ex­e­cutes weapon ejec­tion

SP's MAI - - SP’S EXCLUSIVES -

In­dia’s Ari­hant bal­lis­tic mis­sile sub­ma­rine plat­form demon­stra­tor has suc­cess­fully ex­e­cuted a weapon ejec­tion trial in the Bay of Ben­gal un­der the aegis of the In­dian Navy, BARC and the DRDO. The sub­ma­rine, on sea tri­als since last year, fired what has been re­ported to be an un­armed B-05 sub­ma­rine launched bal­lis­tic mis­sile that sports a range of ap­prox­i­mately 1,000 km in an un­armed or ‘dummy’ con­fig­u­ra­tion. The trial was strictly to ob­serve and val­i­date the weapon ejec­tion mech­a­nism from the Ari­hant’s dor­sal ver­ti­cal mis­sile launch si­los that release their weapons through hy­draulic hatches.

The Ari­hant is cur­rently on a cru­cial leg of tri­als in the Bay of Ben­gal, val­i­dat­ing vir­tu­ally all as­pects of its ef­fi­cacy as a strate­gic weapons de­liv­ery plat­form, in­clud­ing its dive depth and en­durance, acous­tic sig­na­tures at var­i­ous speeds, lurk­ing depth and weapons release depth. A par­al­lel pro­gramme to de­velop its weapons, in­clud­ing the B-05 has pro­gressed with more tests likely in Spring 2016. The Ari­hant will ul­ti­mately sport the K-4 strate­gic nu­clear mis­sile, a sub­ma­rine-launched version of the Agni-III, giv­ing the plat­form its full-fledged place in In­dia’s nu­clear triad. Sources tell SP’s that the suc­cess­ful weapons release test on the Ari­hant has been shared and ac­knowl­edged at the high­est lev­els of gov­ern­ment.

Navy sources also con­firmed that the Ari­hant’s pres­ence at the In­ter­na­tional Fleet Re­view 2016 is also un­der con­sid­er­a­tion, though SP’s has in­de­pen­dently learnt from gov­ern­ment sources that this is un­likely.

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