UPSC PRELIMS 2019 : Varunastra Torpedoes to Indian Navy

Varunastra Torpedoes to Indian Navy

Topic : Varunastra Torpedoes to Indian Navy

Topic in Syllabus: Security Issues


Indian Navy and Bharat Dynamics Limited (BDL) have signed a contract recently worth for supply of heavyweight torpedo Varunastra to Indian Navy.

Varunastra Torpedoes to Indian Navy

About Varunastra:

  • Varunastra is capable of targeting quiet and stealthy submarines, both in deep and littoral waters in intense countermeasure environment.
  • Having almost 95 per cent indigenous content, it weighs around 1.25 tonne.
  • The torpedo, which has already been test-fired from ships, will soon be fired from a submarine.
  • Varunastra has been designed with latest technologies such as high-speed and long-endurance propulsion, software-driven intelligence, conformal array acoustic homing with wide look angle and advanced digital signal processing.
  • The torpedo can be launched from Kolkata, Delhi, Teg, Talwar and Kamorta classes of ships.
  • It has conformal array transducer which can look at wider angles than other torpedos.
  • It is also having advanced autonomous guidance algorithms with low drift navigational aids, insensitive warhead which can operate in various combat scenarios.
  • It has a GPS-based locating aid, a unique feature in contemporary torpedoes in the world.
  • The weapon has completed all environmental qualification tests like shock, vibration, temperature cycling, marine environmental tests.



A modern torpedo is a self-propelled weapon with an explosive warhead, launched above or below the water surface, propelled underwater towards a target, and designed to detonate either on contact with its target or in proximity to it.



  • This made India one of the eight countries to have the capability to design and build such a system. 73 such torpedoes have been ordered by the Indian Navy.
  • This landmark has put navy in the elite club of navies across the globe that can boast of self-reliance in under water sensors and under water weapons.
  • The development of such a technology took 11 whole years by the NSTL and they took a year extra as there were many issues since it was being done for the first time.


Sample Question:

Which of the following have signed a contract for supply of heavyweight torpedo Varunastra to Indian Navy?

a) Indian Navy

b) Bharat Heavy Electricals limited

c) Bharat Dynamics Limited (BDL)

d) None


Answer: C