The Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) successfully conducted the test of an interceptor missile off the Odisha coast on 23rd September. With the success of the test conducted on Sunday night, DRDO has achieved a major milestone in developing a two-layer Ballistic Missile Defence system, according to the defence sources. The test was conducted from the Integrated Test Range (ITR) of the Abdul Kalam Island which was previously known as the Wheeler Island. The Prithvi Defence Vechicle (PDV) mission is for neutralizing the targets in the exo-atmosphere region at an altitude of 50 kilometres above earth’s atmosphere according to a DRDO scientist. Both the PDV interceptor and the target missile engaged successfully in the exo-atmosphere region and the tests were therefore successfully conducted. With this successful test India has now a defence mechanism which can shoot down missiles from China and Pakistan if and when a war like situation arises. The PDV is capable of eliminating threats from nuclear missiles as well which is a salient feature considering China and Pakistan are nuclear capable nations.
The Successful test of the PDV is a commendable achievement by the DRDO considering indigenous development of an interceptor missile is a feat which is yet to be achieved by many countries. The interceptor missile was guided by high-accuracy Inertial Navigation System (INS) which was supported by a Redundant Micro Navigation System which guided it towards the estimated point of interception, according to sources. The heat shield ejected once the missile had crossed the atmosphere and that is when the IR seeker dome opened to close in on the target location as designated by the mission computer. All the events were monitored in real time by the Telemetry Range stations and at various other locations. The missile successfully used the Inertial Guidance and IR Seeker for zeroing in and intercepting the target. China and Pakistan can possibly become two big threats to world peace in the coming days. India which shares borders with both China and Pakistan needed a solid defence mechanism which can be used in case of aggression from either of the two countries.
The DRDO have already been working hard to develop an indigenous Ballistic Missile Defence (BMD) shield. DRDO has been conducting regular tests in order to assess the strength and accuracy of its home built BMDs. Interceptor missiles had earlier been test fired by DRDO on March 1, 2017, February 11, 2017, December 28, 2017 and July 14, 2018. It will be a huge boost for India and DRDO when the PDV is included in the army after complete satisfaction of the army units and DRDO scientists. Even China which spends exponentially more on defence has not been able to develop an indigenously built BMD shield till date. A huge boost for the morale of Indian forces will follow the deployment of the PDV which is going to happen sooner than later.