THE Rustom-II Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV), which is being developed by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO), will be delivered to the armed forces by 2020, said DRDO Chairman S Chistopher, in Pune on Friday.
Christopher was speaking to the media on the sidelines of the 10th convocation ceremony of the Defence Institute of Advanced Technology (DIAT), a technological university of the Ministry of Defence. Christopher is also the chairman of the Governing Council of the DIAT.
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After the convocation ceremony, Christopher told media: “Rustom II has completed one test at Chitradurga in Karnataka. At present, the bird (basic UAV system) is being perfected. Attempts are also being made to increase the altitude. By the end of this year, we will be ready with the bird, after which the focus will be on the machine systems on it.”
The drone is being developed for use by all three services of the Indian Armed Forces, primarily for intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) operations. The medium-altitude prototype can fly at over 22,000 feet and is a long-endurance UAV that has an 20 hours approximate flight time.
Christopher said, “After perfecting the bird, the manufacturing will be done by Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd and Bharat Electronics Ltd, as per the contract. By 2020, our target is to deliver it to the user, the armed forces.”