India’s Nirbhay Nuclear-Capable Cruise Missile Fails Fourth Test-Launch

India’s Nirbhay nuclear-capable subsonic cruise missile failed its fourth test-launch on December 21, 2016. The missile, intended to have a range of 1,000 km, deviated from its path shortly after its launch from the Integrated Test Range at Balasore in Odisha. Sources at the Defense Research and Development Organization (DRDO) claim that the issue was caused by a wing-deployment problem during the second stage of the test-flight. The DRDO activated the missile’s “destruct” mechanism just minutes into the test-flight, which was originally scheduled to last over an hour. Previous tests in March 2013 and October 2015 also resulted in failures, while a flight in October 2014 was considered a partial success.

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Missile Defense Project, "India’s Nirbhay Nuclear-Capable Cruise Missile Fails Fourth Test-Launch," Missile Threat, Center for Strategic and International Studies, December 22, 2016, last modified June 15, 2018,