India’s Defense Research and Development Organization (DRDO) has started work on air-launched version of the Nirbhay subsonic cruise missile to arm Su-30MKI fighter and will launch it from an aircraft in a couple of months, Tass reported Thursday.
According to reports, DRDO is now working on integrating it with the fighter jet’s systems and developing the capability of launching from low altitudes, in order to minimize its visibility to radar.
Nirbhay missile can use the Su-30MKI’s existing pylons that now carry the Brahmos missile. DRDO is considering Nirbhay missile to arm Tejas, a light fighter jet with a rocket “shortened” by about 25%.
Nirbhay I can be adapted for naval release by both a surface ship and submarines. It has a range of 1500 kms, weighs 1000 kgs, and its current engine is ramjet technology. It was tested successfully with all parametres matching the standards set by the DRDO in October, 2014.