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Agni-5 Ballistic Missile

  • 16 Dec 2022
  • 5 min read

Why in News?

Recently, India successfully carried out the night trials of the Agni-5 nuclear-capable ballistic missile.

What are the Features of the Missile?

  • Agni-5 is an ingeniously built advanced surface-to-surface ballistic missile developed under the Integrated Guided Missile Development Programme (IGMDP).
  • It is a fire-and-forget missile, which cannot be stopped without an interceptor missile.
  • The missile has the capability of hitting targets beyond the range of 5000 km and is crucial for India's self-defense systems.

What are Agni Missiles?

  • About:
  • Other Ranges of Agni Missiles:
    • Agni I: Range of 700-800 km.
    • Agni II: Range more than 2000 km.
    • Agni III: Range of more than 2,500 Km
    • Agni IV: Range is more than 3,500 km and can fire from a road mobile launcher.
    • Agni-V: The longest of the Agni series, an Inter-Continental Ballistic Missile (ICBM) with a range of over 5,000 km.

What is the Integrated Guided Missile Development Programme?

  • IGMDP was the brainchild of renowned scientist Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam.
  • It was intended to attain self-sufficiency in the field of missile technology.
  • After keeping in mind, the requirements of various types of missiles by the defense forces, the program recognized the need to develop five missile systems.
  • The IGMDP formally got the approval of the Indian government in 1983.
  • It brought together the country’s scientific community, academic institutions, R&D laboratories, industries and the three defence services in giving shape to the strategic, indigenous missile systems.
  • The missiles developed under IGMDP are:
    • Short-range surface-to-surface ballistic missile – Prithvi
    • Intermediate-range surface-to-surface ballistic missile – Agni
    • Short-range low-level surface-to-air missile – Trishul
    • Medium-range surface-to-air missile – Akash
    • Third generation anti-tank missile – Nag

UPSC Civil Services Examination, Previous Year Questions (PYQs)

Q1. What is “Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD)”, sometimes seen in the news? (2018)

(a) An Israeli radar system
(b) India’s indigenous anti-missile programme
(c) An American anti-missile system
(d) A defence collaboration between Japan and South Korea.

Ans: (c)

  • Terminal High Altitude Area Defence (THAAD) is an American anti-missile system designed to intercept and destroy short and medium-range ballistic missiles during their “terminal” phase of flight when they are falling towards the target.
  • They have the ability to intercept missile inside and outside the atmosphere.
  • It is interoperable with other ballistic missile defence systems and is highly mobile and deployable worldwide.
  • Therefore, option (c) is the correct answer.

Q2. With reference to Agni-IV Missile, which of the following statements is/are correct? (2014)

  1. It is a surface-to-surface missile.
  2. It is fuelled by liquid propellant only.
  3. It can deliver one-tonne nuclear warheads about 7500 km away.

Select the correct answer using the code given below:

(a) 1 only
(b) 2 and 3 only
(c) 1 and 3 only 
(d) 1, 2 and 3

Ans: (a)

  • Agni-IV is a nuclear-capable long-range ballistic missile of India, with a strike range of 4,000 km.
  • The indigenously developed Agni-IV is a two-stage surface-to-surface missile. It is 20 metres long with a weight of 17 tonnes. Hence, statement 1 is correct.
  • It is a two stage solid fuelled system that can carry a one-tonne nuclear warhead over a distance of 4,000 kilometres. Hence, statements 2 and 3 are not correct. Therefore, option (a) is the correct answer.

Source: TH

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