India in elite missile club

New Delhi: India has successfully flight tested hypersonic technology that will clear the decks for development of missiles travelling at six times the speed of sound.

In layman’s terms, the hypersonic missile with scramjet engine will have the capacity to travel at more than two kilometres per second. The project should fructify in five years.

With this successful demonstration, the country enters an elite club and becomes a member of the hypersonic regime. India is the fourth country after the United States, Russia and China to secure this technology.

The Hypersonic Technology Demonstration Vehicle operates on a scramjet engine, as against the ramjet engine which is used on most missiles. The ramjet engines operate at supersonic speeds of up to Mach 3. The DRDO successfully demonstrated the scramjet technology with the flight test of the HTDV at the APJ Abdul Kalam Launch Complex at Wheeler Island, off the coast of Odisha.

The ministry said during the test critical events like fuel injection and auto ignition of scramjet demonstrated technological maturity and the scramjet engine performed in a "textbook manner". Defence Minister Rajnath Singh has appreciated the DRDO for achieving this milestone. The technology has multiple civilian applications, too. It can be used for launching satellites at low cost.

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