India's indigenous Rustom-II UAV completes maiden flight

India's indigenous Rustom-II UAV completes maiden flight 18 November, 2016

The Indian-developed Rustom II medium-altitude long-endurance unmanned aerial vehicle (MALE UAV) has carried out its maiden flight near Bangalore at a specialised test range..

Official sources told that the test flight was limited to a 100 km range even though the UAV's operational range to conduct intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) missions for all three of India's services is expected to reach to 250 km.

India's Ministry of Defence (MoD) said in a statement that the test flight achieved the main objectives of testing the platform's capabilities such as take-off, banking, level flying, and landing.

Further trials will be conducted before the UAV enters a user validation trial phase, the India's Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) says.

Developed by the Aeronautical Development Establishment of DRDO and Bharat Electronics Limited, the first prototype of the 1.8-tonne multi-mission UAV - known as TAPAS 201 - has a 21 m wingspan, a capacity payload of 350 kg, an endurance of over 24 hours, and an operational ceiling of 10,660 m (34,776 feet), according to the MoD. The public sector Hindustan Aeronautics Limited is also a production partner in the programme.

Issue 86