Russia and India are to develop a BrahMos light cruise missile for use on Russia's 5th-generation T-50 PAK FA fighters. The Russian military already arms its submarines with the BrahMos cruise missile. Pictured: A BrahMos cruise missile on display during IMDS 2007. Photo by One half 3544/Wikimedia Commons
Jan. 30 (UPI) -- A BrahMos light cruise missile is in development for future use on Russia's 5th-generation T-50 PAK FA fighter aircraft.
According to an announcement made by Machine-Building R&D Consortium CEO and general designer Alexander Leonov, Russia will collaborate with India to develop smaller variants of the BrahMos cruise missile to integrate with new air-based platforms.
"We are working on the missile's light version," Russia's Tass news agency quoted Leonov as saying. "It should fit the size of a torpedo tube and be almost 1.5 times smaller by its weight. It will be possible to mount our airborne missile on a wide range [of aircraft]."
The BrahMos is a short-range ramjet supersonic cruise missile designed to be launched from submarines, ships, aircraft, or land-based platforms. The product is a result of a collaboration between Russia's NPO Mashinostroyeniya and India's Defense Research and Development Organization.
Russian state media has referred to the weapon as the fastest anti-ship cruise missile in operation.
While defense industry officials have confirmed a lighter variant will be developed for the T-50 PAK FA aircraft, they are also eyeing applications for existing platforms.
"Of course, we'll be developing it, first of all, for the fifth-generation plane but, possibly, it will be mounted on the MiG-35 fighter, although we have not carried out such developments," Leonov added.