General Studies IIISecurity

Pralay: Surface-to-Surface missile


DRDO successfully conducts second flight-test of indigenously developed conventional Surface-to-Surface missile ‘Pralay’

Key Highlights of Pralay:

  • Pralay is a canisterised surface-to-surface tactical short-range ballistic missile (SRBM) for battlefield use.
  • Speed: Mach 1 to 1.6
  • Operational range: 150–500 km 
  • It is developed by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) of India.
  • The missile is the amalgamation of technologies developed for exoatmospheric interceptor missile Prithvi Defence Vehicle (PDV) from Indian Ballistic Missile Defence Programme and Prahaar tactical missile.
  • It is powered with a solid propellant rocket motor and many new technologies.
  • The missile guidance system includes state-of-the-art navigation system and integrated avionics.
  • The project to develop Pralay was sanctioned in March 2015 with a budget of ₹332.88 crore (equivalent to ₹427 crore or US$57 million in 2020)
  • Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) successfully conducted second flight-test today from Dr APJ Abdul Kalam Island off the coast of Odisha on December 23, 2021.
  • The flight test met all the mission objectives.
  • This launch proves the system in both the configurations of the missile. 
  • In today’s launch, the ‘Pralay’ missile was tested for heavier payload and different range to prove the precision and lethality of the weapon.
  • This launch was monitored by all the range sensors and instruments, including Telemetry, Radar and Electro-Optic Tracking System deployed across the eastern coast and the down range ships positioned near the impact point. 


It is a derivative of the Prahaar missile programme, which was first tested in 2011.

  • Prahaar is a surface-to-surface missile with a range of 150 km.
  • Primary objective is to bridge the gap between the unguided Pinaka multi-barrel rocket launcher and the guided Prithvi missile variants.
  • Range: The missile has a range of 150-500 kilometre and can be launched from a mobile launcher.
    • Pralay will be the longest-range surface-to-surface missile in the inventory of the Army.
      • The Army also has the BrahMos supersonic cruise missile in its arsenal, with a stated range of 290-plus kilometres.
  • Significance: It will completely change the tactical battlefield dynamics and India will have two conventional missiles with long range.
    • The BrahMos will be a cruise option and this one will be the ballistic option.

Ballistic Missile vs Cruise Missile
Ballistic MissileCruise Missile
Travel in projectile motion and trajectory depends on gravity, air resistance and Coriolis Force.Comparatively follows a straight trajectory of motion.
Leave the earth’s atmosphere and re enter it.The flight path is within the earth’s atmosphere.
Long-range missiles (300 km to 12,000 km)Short range missiles (range upto 1000 km)
E.g. Prithvi I, Prithvi II, Agni I, Agni II and Dhanush missiles.E.g. BrahMos missiles

List of important Missiles which are used by Indian Armed Forces or they are currently at different stages of development:

Types of MissilesName of the MissileType of MissileOperational RangeSpeed
Air-to-air missilesMICAAir-to-Air Missiles500 m to 80 kmMach 4
Astra MissileAir-to-Air Missiles80-110 kmMach 4.5 +
Novator K-100Medium Range air-to-air missile300–400 kmMach 3.3
  Surface-To-Air MissilesTrishulShort-Range surface to air missile9 kmThere were problems in this missile as it could not hit its targets. Hence, this programme was officially closed in 2008 by the Ministry of Defence (MoD). This missile was not inducted by the Indian Armed Forces. India, decided to import Barak Missiles from Israel.
Akash Missile (There are 3 Variants at different stages of development – Akash-1S, Akash Mark-II, Akash-NG)Medium-range surface-to-air missileAkash -1S (18 – 30 Km) Akash Mk-II (35 – 40 Km) Akash-NG (More than 50 Km)Mach 2.5 to 3.5
Barak 8Long-Range surface to air Missile100 kmMach 2
Prithvi Air Defence (PAD)exo-atmospheric interceptor missile2000 kmMach 8
Surface-to-surface MissilesAgni-IMedium-range ballistic missile700-1250 kmMach 7.5
Agni-IIIntermediate-range ballistic missile2,000–3,000 kmMach 12
Agni-IIIIntermediate-range ballistic missileAround 3,000 km5–6 km/s
Agni-IVIntermediate-range ballistic missileAround 4,000 kmMach 7
Agni-VIntercontinental ballistic missileAround 5,000 kmMach 24
Prithvi IShort-Range Ballistic Missile150 km
Prithvi IIShort-Range Ballistic Missile350 km
DhanushShort-Range Ballistic Missile350 – 600 km
ShauryaMedium-Range Ballistic Missile750 to 1,900 km
PrahaarShort-Range Ballistic Missile150 km
Cruise MissilesBrahMosSupersonic cruise missile290 kmMach 2.8 to 3 Mach
BrahMos IIHypersonic cruise missile450 – 600 kmMach 7
NirbhaySubsonic cruise missile1,000 – 1500 kmMach 0.8
Ballistic Missile Defence (BMD) Systems / Interceptor MissilesPrithvi Air Defence (PAD)Exo-atmospheric Anti-ballistic missileAltitude – 80 kmMach 5+
Prithvi Defence Vehicle (PDV)Exo-atmospheric Anti-ballistic missileAltitude – 150 kmMach 4.5
Advanced Air Defence (AAD) /Ashwin Ballistic Missile InterceptorEndoatmospheric Anti-ballistic missileAltitude – 30 km 
  Submarine Launched Ballistic Missiles    
Sagarika (K-15)Ballistic MissileAround 750 Km 
K-4Ballistic MissileAround 3,000 km 
K-5Ballistic MissileAround 5,000 km 
  Anti-Tank MissileAmoghaAnti-Tank Guided Missile2.8 km 
NagAnti-Tank Guided Missile500 m – 4 km230 m/s
HelinaAnti-Tank Guided Missile7 – 10 km


Source: PIB

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One thought on “Pralay: Surface-to-Surface missile

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