Next week, India will launch its first indigenous advanced unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) for strategic reconnaissance and surveillance. According to the sources, a second domestic weaponized drone is also slated to perform its maiden flight test by June-July 2023.
During the Aero-India event in Bengaluru, the DRDO-developed Tapas-BH (tactical aerial platform for advanced surveillance-beyond-horizon) drone will transmit live aerial and static exhibitions of many aircraft. Advanced indigenous drones will be much cheaper.
"Tapas-BH will showcase its capabilities, which includes operating at altitudes up to 28,000-feet, with an endurance of over 18 hours. The medium-altitude long-endurance (MALE) is DRDO’s solution for ISTAR (intelligence, surveillance, target acquisition and reconnaissance) requirements of the Army, IAF and Navy,” a defence ministry official said on February 9.
The armed drone called Archer-NG can carry 300kg of weapons including smart anti-airfield weapons. "The UAV, also capable of night-flying, is now getting ready for formal user-trial evaluation by the armed forces. It can thereafter go for production in large numbers by Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd, Bharat Electronics and others." - According to a source.