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Friday, February 11, 2011

Pakistan's Gift To Aero India: A Cruise Missile Test

Perhaps by special request from the companies peddling air and missile defense equipment at Aero India, Pakistan has conducted a test of its HATF-VII cruise missile, also known as Babur.

It is not the first test of the weapon, but some previous tests have been conducted more quietly. This time, Pakistan has not felt the need to try to keep the test quiet, perhaps because it declares it was successful, or perhaps because of political calculations related to India.

blog post photo
(Credit: Pakistan military)
The HATF-VII is effectively Pakistan's version of an early generation Tomhawk cruise missile, with terrain matching and digital scene matching and area correlation targeting. Interestingly, Pakistan says the missile can be equipped with conventional and "strategic" warheads.

The range of the terrain-following missile appears may have inched up in recent years (it was first tested in 2005), and Pakistan says now is around 600 km.

The Pakistani military is not saying where the Feb. 10 test took place.

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