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Indian Ministry of Defence has cleared the proposed development of Long-Range Land Attack Cruise Missile (LRLACM) for Ship launched cruise missile for Land-based strikes for the Indian Navy which will also be adopted later for the Air force and Army variant with a range of 1000 km, just like Nirbhay Cruise missile with a hint of BrahMos speed.

Nirbhay Cruise missile program has been officially closed but the technology of seeker and booster propulsion will be carried on the LRLACM program too which includes Small Turbofan Engines (STFE) or the Manik turbofan engine for the second stage propulsion which is near identical to what now scrapped Nirbhay Cruise missile had to offer but this is where it gets interesting and separates Nirbhay from LRLACM.

LRLACM will fly most of its flight at subsonic speeds but it will perform a supersonic sprint in the terminal approach to the target which considerably will reduce the reaction time for the target’s defense systems to react. LRLACM will have a booster with thrust vectoring capability at the initial launch stage, once its jettisoned, Turbofan will kick in and maintain at subsonic speed while it’s flying at Tree-top levels cover for the 1000 km at approximately 20 minutes then it does its supersonic sprint in the terminal approach to the target.

DRDO and Russia already have been developing similar missiles in the Anti-Ship version role and LRLACM will be a land attack based version of the same missile with changes in seeker technology for land attack roles for the air force and Army. DRDO also is developing Naval Anti-Shipping Missile Short Range (NASM-SR) with a 55 km range for use from Sea King helicopters and eventually equip the MH60R helicopters.


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