Former President A P J Abdul Kalam has asked the BrahMos aerospace company to develop an advanced version of the cruise missile to maintain India's leadership in this field.
"You should develop a hypersonic version of BrahMos which can be reused...meaning that the missile should be able to deliver its payload and return to base. This will help in maintaining our leadership in this arena," he said.
The former President was addressing a function on the 10th anniversary of the launch of BrahMos supersonic cruise missile. India is the only country to have a supersonic cruise missile developed in a joint venture with Russia.
Speaking on the occasion, BrahMos Aerospace chief A Sivathanu Pillai said BrahMos is a unique missile which can be configured for multiple types of platforms on land, on sea and underwater against different types of targets on land and sea. "Its competitor is yet to be born. Its speed and devastating power has made it unparalleled," he said.
The missile system has already been inducted in the Army and the Navy and its orders for the next ten years from all the three services. Work is also underway to develop an air-launched and underwater version of the missile.
The first launch was carried out a decade ago at the Interim Test Range at Chandipur-on-sea which coincided with Russia Formation Day which falls on 12th June.
The name BrahMos is a portmanteau formed from the names of two rivers, the Brahmaputra of India and the Moskva of Russia.
The missile travels at speeds of Mach 2.8 to 3.0 and is about three-and-a-half times faster than the US' subsonic Harpoon cruise missile.