The Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) accomplished a triumphant flight trial of the Agni Prime missile, a cutting-edge ballistic missile endowed with nuclear capabilities, on Wednesday. Taking place on the night of June 7 from the scenic Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam Island situated off the coast of Odisha, this event showcased Agni Prime as the successor to the operational Agni-I and Agni-II missiles.
The development of the Agni Prime missile was spurred by the perceived threats emanating from Pakistan and China, thereby amplifying the significance of this missile’s inception.
This recent test not only served as the users’ inaugural night launch before induction but also validated the system’s precision and dependability after three successful developmental trials. An array of Range Instrumentation systems, comprising Radar, Telemetry, and Electro-Optical Tracking Systems, were strategically stationed at diverse locations, including two down-range ships at the terminal point, with the primary objective of capturing comprehensive flight data throughout the missile’s trajectory. The Defence Ministry’s official statement substantiates these measures.
Belonging to the Agni family of medium to intercontinental-range ballistic missiles, aptly named after the element of fire, the Agni missile series made its inception with Agni-I in 1989 under the Integrated Guided Missile Development Program (IGDMP). Subsequently, a succession of missile variants emerged, culminating in the Intercontinental Ballistic Missile (ICBM) Agni-V. Presently, Agni-VI, another ICBM boasting a range of 11,000-12,000 kilometers, remains in the development phase. Agni Prime (Agni-P) assumes a prominent position within this series of missiles.
The inception of the Agni Prime missile dates back to 2016 when preliminary reports surfaced indicating DRDO’s endeavor to forge a successor to Agni-I, known as Agni-1P, which would assimilate technologies from Agni-IV and Agni-V.