More on ASMP-A, Brahmos, HCM MIRV-ed warheads

Missed a zero! With hypersonic cruise glide MIRVed warheads (not glide-bombs) on A-5 and successor A-6, the range actually is increased by 2000-3000 kms (not 200 kms as mentioned in my previous blog on the subject). So, an 8000 km A-5 becomes a near ICBM with 11000 km range (tho’, strictly speaking, 12000 kms range defines ICBM).

Further on ASMP-A, it can go supersonic at low altitude but isn’t maneuverable at these heights because its MiG-25-type air-intakes would be pulled sunder. At tree-top height it, in fact, becomes a “dumb bullet” that a mobile target can avoid, rendering ASMP-A vulnerable to interception. Brahmos, on the other hand, can pull an S-maneuver at very low altitudes. This was proved in the 2nd Brahmos test in the desert, destroying a target 20 kms away with pinpoint accuracy after relying on the Russian Glonass GPS. (The first Brahmos test failed, it may be recalled, because the US GPS it was using to cue to target “blinked” at a crucial moment in time in its flight path.)

About Bharat Karnad

Senior Fellow in National Security Studies at the Centre for Policy Research, New Delhi, he was Member of the (1st) National Security Advisory Board and the Nuclear Doctrine-drafting Group, and author, among other books of, 'Nuclear Weapons and Indian Security: The Realist Foundations of Strategy', 'India's Nuclear Policy' and most recently, 'Why India is Not a Great Power (Yet)'. Educated at the University of California (undergrad and grad), he was Visiting Scholar at Princeton University, University of Pennsylvania, the Shanghai Institutes of International Studies, and Henry L. Stimson Center, Washington, DC.
This entry was posted in Asian geopolitics, Cyber & Space, Defence Industry, DRDO, Geopolitics, Great Power imperatives, India's strategic thinking and policy, Indian Air Force, Indian para-military forces, Military Acquisitions, Missiles, Nuclear Policy & Strategy, Russia, russian assistance, South Asia, Strategic Relations with the US & West, Technology transfer, United States, US.. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to More on ASMP-A, Brahmos, HCM MIRV-ed warheads

  1. satyaki says:

    But will the A-6 get GoI sanction ? that is what matters irrespective of Dr. Avinash Chander’s push. Will a UPA3 or third front govt sanction A-6 ? I doubt. I just hope that UPA does not cancel A-5.

  2. Vihan says:

    Nevertheless, this is still meaningless unless we have a real H-Bomb of a yield of minimum 3MT. What I will add, but I doubt many people would agree is that we should continue testing till we have a ~26MT warhead which is miniaturised for the MIRV warheads.

    We know for a fact that if there is a major breakthrough tomorrow in any branch of Physics and one of the P5 is able to make say a 1 TT (Teraton) yield warhead, the others will and have to follow suit, where would we be then? Science will continue to progress and that will always be the foundation on which the next generation conventional and unconventional weapons will be based. We should never allow ourselves to be boxed in with any treaty which seeks to do so.

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