India has made progress in the development of its K-5 submarine-launched ballistic missile (SLBM), a new report has revealed.
The nuclear-capable missile, which will arm India’s future ballistic missile submarines (SSBNs), is likely to be tested by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) in the next 15 months, the report says.
K-5 is the third SLBM that India is working on.
India’s first SLBM, K-15, has already entered service. It arms INS Arihant, the only operational SSBN that India currently has. This missile, tested extensively over the years, has a stated range of around 750 kilometers.
Given its short range, the K-15 can’t hit Chinese population and industrial centers during a conflict unless the submarine it is being launched from reaches close to the Chinese coastline in the South China Sea. Doing so during a conflict, experts say, will make the submarine more vulnerable to attacks.
India is developing K-4 and K-5 SLBMs to end this limitation.
While the K-4 has a range of around 3,500 kilometers, the K-5 can hit targets nearly 5,000 kilometers away. Using a K-5, experts say, an Indian SSBN can hit targets of strategic value in China from the Indian Ocean.
India has tested the K-4 SLBM multiple times in the past. In January this year, the missile was tested twice in five days. Reports say the development of the missile is complete and it is ready to enter series production.
The K-5, however, is still in development and hasn’t been tested before.
India’s second SSBN, INS Arighat, is currently undergoing trials. It is likely to enter service in the next six months, reports say.
As you are no doubt aware, Swarajya is a media product that is directly dependent on support from its readers in the form of subscriptions. We do not have the muscle and backing of a large media conglomerate nor are we playing for the large advertisement sweep-stake.
Our business model is you and your subscription. And in challenging times like these, we need your support now more than ever.
We deliver over 10 - 15 high quality articles with expert insights and views. From 7AM in the morning to 10PM late night we operate to ensure you, the reader, get to see what is just right.
Becoming a Patron or a subscriber for as little as Rs 999/year is the best way you can support our efforts.