India-Russia JV to fund hypersonic missile project

August 17th, 2011 - 10:01 pm ICT by IANS  

Moscow, Aug 17 (IANS) Brahmos Aerospace will fund a joint project of an Indian and Russian educational institution for developing a hypersonic cruise missile capable of flying at Mach 7 or seven times the speed of sound.

BrahMos, an India-Russia joint venture, will initially fund $1 million each to the Indian Institute of Science (IISc) and the Moscow Aviation Institute (MAI) for them to work on the project.

BrahMos, MAI, the Russian ministry of science and technology and the Russian partner in BrahMos NPOM Machinista signed an agreement on this here Tuesday.

BrahMos CEO Sivathanu Pillai, MAI Director Gerashenko Anatoly and Russian Federation Minister for Science and Technology Furshenko Andrei signed the agreement.

The new missile, capable of flying at more than twice the speed of the existing BrahMos missile, will need new technologies in materials, electronics, guidance, propulsion and warhead which the joint project is expected to develop.

Giving details, BrahMos public relations officer Praveen Pathak said the funding could be increased depending on the progress achieved by the institutes working on the project.

There will be an exchange of scientists and engineers between IISc and MAI and the intellectual property of the research will be with BrahMos.

The joint project aims to develop the next generation cruise missile based on scramjet technology.

Separately, the Defence Research and Development Laboratry (DRDL), an Indian public sector institution, is working on a scramjet for the BrahMos missile.

The engine will be integrated into the airframe, guidance system and warhead that are to be developed by the IISc-MAI partnership.

Further, the Indo-Russian Joint Commission on BrahMos partnership has approved a list of countries to which the missile could be exported, Pathak said, adding that the meeting held in June gave the go-ahead for international marketing of the missile to non-NATO countries.

(Mohammed Ahmedullah is the editor of and can be reached at

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