Bangalore, Jan 25 (IANS) India will flight test its "Nirbhay (fearless)" subsonic cruise missile in February from the integrated test range at Chandipur in Odisha on the east coast, a top defence official said Friday.
"The medium range sub-sonic cruise missile Nirbhay is at the final state of integration and we hope to launch it next month to flight test its capabilities, including stealth and accuracy," scientific advisor to defence minister V.K. Saraswat told reporters here.
Weighing about one tonne, the six-metre long missile is being integrated with ring-laser gyro-based high accuracy navigation system and a radio altimeter for the height.
Designed and developed by the Aeronautical Development Establishment of the state-run Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) in Bangalore for the Indian armed forces, the cruise missile can be launched from land, sea and air and has a 750 km range.
"The missile has also a good loitering capability, control and guidance with a high degree of accuracy for maximum impact," Saraswat, who is also director-general of DRDO, said at a briefing on the upcoming ninth edition of Aero India 2013 here.
The all-weather cruise missile will be inducted into the Indian navy, army and air force over the next 12-18 months.
"The integration is taking place at our R&D Engineers at Pune for the maiden test next month," a DRDO official said.
Nirbhay will also supplement the Brahmos cruise missile by carrying warheads beyond the 300km range, as it is capable of flying at different altitudes ranging from 500 metres to 4km. With two wings alongside, the missile can also fly at low altitudes to avoid detection by enemy radar.