March 15th, 2010
12:31 PM ET

India missile defense system fails test

India aborted a test of its homegrown missile interception system Monday as a target missile used in the experiment malfunctioned and lost track, defense officials said.

The test was being carried out at a range off India's eastern coast, according to the country's Defense Research and Development Organization (DRDO).

The target missile that was being used to mimic an incoming ballistic missile "deviated due to some onboard system malfunction and could not maintain the intended trajectory," the organization said in a statement.

The system then automatically abandoned the launch of an interceptor missile.

Officials were analyzing the cause of Monday's failure, the DRDO said.

In a 2007 test, the system's interceptor missiles shot down target missiles twice, according to Indian authorities.

Last year, nuclear-armed India insisted it had inched closer to having its own ballistic missile defense shield with a third successful test.

The missile-defense technology India is testing is currently working in the United States, Russia and Israel.

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