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Indian Navy, HAL developing next-generation rotor-wing UAV news
12 February 2008

New Delhi: Indian Navy chief, Admiral Sureesh Mehta, has said that the Indian Navy has initiated a 'path breaking' project, which will develop a new generation and long-endurance unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV). This NextGen UAV will have the capability of penetrating deep into enemy territory for data collection and reconnaissance purposes.

The rotary wing UAV, which will fly like a helicopter, will be designed jointly by the Navy and state-run aerospace major Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL). According to Admiral Mehta, the rotor-wing UAV is expected to transform naval warfare.

"We are working with HAL to develop a new generation UAV on a helicopter platform. It will be a path breaking initiative and transform naval warfare," Admiral Mehta said on the sidelines of a function here.

According to Adm Mehta the UAV's payload bay will carry sophisticated reconnaissance equipment, maritime patrol sensors and data transmitters which will enable it to record images in enemy territory and transmit them back to controlling stations.

HAL chairman and managing director, Ashok Baweja, said that the project concept had been finalised and that sanction and funds were now getting into place. He said that the project would start soon. 

Baweja also said that the HAL had already identified a foreign partner for the project without divulging any further details. He said that HAL would require the help of the foreign partner for certain required inputs.

He also said that the UAV, apart from surveillance equipment, would carry larger fuel packs for longer endurance in the air.

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Indian Navy, HAL developing next-generation rotor-wing UAV