BrahMos Aerospace said it has developed two additional air and sub-surface variants of its BrahMos supersonic cruise missile. These versions come in addition to the four types India already possesses: ship-to-ship, land-to-land, land-to-ship and ship-to-land.
BrahMos Aerospace chief executive and managing director, Sivathanu Pillai, said that they are very close to the launch of the underwater version and the navy has to ready the requisite platform for the testing. I am curious to find out what kind of platform will be this time. Will India make use of its supersonic submarines or will they conduct the launch again from their underwater launcher positioned in the Bay of Bengal, from which they already launched their Sagarika back in February?
I already wrote in an earlier post about the air-version of the BrahMos. Domain-b provides now some additional insight. It reports that
the development systems were ready and the integrated test would be undertaken after mock firing. However, the launch of the air version and commercial production would take some time as certain structural modifications were yet to be made in the Russian-built Sukhoi aircraft.Another news source quoted Sivathanu Pillai saying that “by 2009 trials for the air version of BrahMos will start and it will be ready for induction in the Air Force by 2012”.
Let’s continue with our one-man-show: Pillai said furthermore that the company would also take up BrahMos-2 project under a major expansion program to produce hypersonic missiles that could cruise at speeds of 5-7 Mach.
India is eager to speed up the production of the BrahMos. The recent acquisition of an assembly plant in the state of Kerala from Kerala Hightech Industries Ltd in addition to the main plant in Hyderabad, would allow the company to increase production to 50 BrahMos missiles a year and fulfill the army orders on schedule. You can certainly guess who spread this piece of information …. Sivathanu Pillai.
Please stay tuned for the next episode of our one-man-show "The best toys of Sivathanu Pillai".
Top image: Sivathanu Pillau (left) © The Hindu Businessline
lower infochart: © RIA Novosti