The surface-to-surface Prithvi II ballistic missile was successfully launched at 11.03 a.m.on Saturday from the integrated test range at Chandipur off Odisha coast.

The strategic forces command of the army, entrusted with the nuclear weapons delivery systems, launched the missile.

The Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) officials said the missile had an “excellent flight” and it travelled over its entire range of 350 km.

PTI reports:

The test-fire of the short-range ballistic missile, which has already been inducted into the armed forces, was a user’s trial conducted from the test range at Chandipur.

The sleek missile is handled by the strategic force command, defence sources said.

The trial was conducted in order to gauge the effectiveness of the weapon in a real time situation.

“The whole exercise was aimed at studying the control and guidance system of the missile besides providing training to the Army, which happens to be the user,” said an official.

The state-of-the-art missile, capable of carrying both nuclear and conventional warheads, has a length of 9 metres and is one metre in diameter with liquid propulsion twin engine.

Prithvi, the first ballistic missile developed under the country’s prestigious Integrated Guided Missile Development Programme has the capability to carry 500 kg of warheads with a strike range of 350 km.

The missile uses advanced inertial guidance system with manoeuvring trajectory.