After the successful launch of the supersonic Brahmos cruise missile from the Sukhoi-30, ensuring a tactical advantage for the armed forces, work on ‘BRAHMOS Light,’ a lighter version of the missile that can be fired from the Tejas, the indigenously made Light Combat Aircraft that the Indian Air Force is acquiring, has begun.
The new version of the Brahmos will have a smaller engine. The warhead will be about the same but the weight of the missile will be considerably less. The lighter missile’s range will be about the same: 300 km.
A senior defence official said it is “currently in the design stage, though initial consultations have been held.” The missile is likely to be ready by 2019.
The Brahmos (‘Brah’ from Brahmaputra and ‘Mos’ from Moscow) is a missile jointly developed in the late Nineties.
Its speed makes interception difficult. As the Tejas is a lighter aircraft compared with to the Sukhoi-30 (about 1,000kg to 1,800 kg), a lighter missile becomes necessary. The IAF is looking at over 120 Tejas fighter aircraft in the future.