Big boost for BrahMos-M

SP's Special Correspondent

August 19, 2014: With the BrahMos Block II missile proving itself well during trials in multiple engagement modes, the focus has shifted to the next variants, with the incoming BrahMos CEO S.K. Mishra signalling that one of his priorities will be the BrahMos-M (now, officially the BrahMos-Mini), a compact, but fully capable version of the original cruise missile. Planned for operational induction by 2017, the BrahMos-M could find applications across dimensions, including air launch. It is anticipated that a tripartite agreement between NPO Mashinostroyenia, BrahMos Aerospace and DRDO will be finalised, if not signed, when Russian President Vladimir Putin arrives on an official visit to Delhi in December this year. "My priorities will be indenisation of missile development in India, capacity building for larger production, meeting production orders ahead of schedule," says Mr Mishra. On his watch, BrahMos Corp. will also conduct the first 'demonstration launches' of the BrahMos-A from a Su-30MKI early next year, followed by further tests of the underwater launched BrahMos, being developed for the P75I submarine line. The focus also shifts qualitatively now to the hypersonic BrahMos-II. Mishra's other big priority will be to move BrahMos into the export regime, so far throttled by foreign policy concerns.