India Tests Nirbhay Cruise Missile

On November 7, the Indian Ministry of Defense announced that its Defense Research and Development Organization successfully test-fired the Nirbhay, an indigenous land-attack cruise missile. The Nirbhay was fired from the Integrated Test Range on Abdul Kalam Island off the coast of the southeastern province of Odisha. “The missile majestically cruised for a total time duration of 50 minutes, achieving the range of 647 km,” the MoD said.

The Nirbhay is capable of loitering, cruises at Mach 0.9, and is reported to have a range between 800 and 1,000 km. It carries a 300-450 kg conventional payload (high explosive, submunitions), but can also be fitted with a small nuclear warhead (<12 kT). The missile has previously been compared to the US RGM-109 Tomahawk and Russian SS-N-27 Klub cruise missiles.

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