India is celebrating its National Technology day today to mark the historic feat of test-firing its very first nuclear-capable missile back in 1998. The nuclear tests that took place on May 11, 1998 saw late President of India, Dr APJ Abdul Kalam leading the Indian team of scientists to successfully test-fire the Shakti-1 nuclear missile at Rajasthan’s Pokhran test range. Apart from the nuclear tests being conducted, India’s first indigenous aircraft – the Hansa 3 – also took flight in the state of Bengaluru.
Designed by National Aerospace Laboratory, India, the light, two-seater aircraft was aimed to serve pilot training, surveillance, aerial photography and other such purposes. DRDO added to the day’s importance by successfully completing the test-fire sessions of India’s Surface-to-Air Trishul missile. The missile was then introduced to the Indian Army and Airforce and came as a part of the Integrated Guided Missile Development Programme of India. With all these technological advancements being completed on the same day, then Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee announced May 11 as the National technology Day.
Surface to air missile
A surface-to-airmissile (SAM),or ground-to-airmissile (GTAM), is a missile designed to be launched from the ground to destroy aircraft or other missiles. It is one type of antiaircraft system; in modern armed forces, missiles have replaced most other forms of dedicated antiaircraft weapons, with anti-aircraft guns pushed into specialized roles.
A nuclear weapon is an explosive device that derives its destructive force from nuclear reactions, either fission (fission-bomb) or a combination of fission and fusion (thermonuclear weapon). Both reactions release vast quantities of energy from relatively small amounts of matter.