DRDO successfully flight-tests drone for live-fire weapon tests
15 May 2019
The Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) on Monday successfully carried out the first flight test of the Abhyas High-speed Expendable Aerial Target (HEAT) drone, a new vehicle for live-fire weapon tests.
Abhyas was launched using a special catapult-like launcher from the Interim Test Range at Chandipur, in Balasspore, Odisha.
“The flight test was tracked by various radars and electro optic systems and proved its performance in fully autonomous way point navigation mode,” a DRDO release stated.
“The configuration of Abhyas is designed on an in-line small gas turbine engine and uses indigenously developed microelectromechanical system (MEMS) based navigation system for its navigation and guidance. The performance of the system was as per simulations carried out and demonstrated the capability of Abhyas to meet the mission requirement for a cost effective HEAT,” the release added.
In development since 2012, Abhyas will be used to test surface-to-air as well as air-to-air weapons systems, including anti-aircraft weapons as well as anti-cruise missile and anti-ballistic missile systems. It has an adjustable radar cross-section so it can simulate differently sized targets, and even an acoustic miss distance indicator (AMDI) so that researchers can tell the strike or non-strike accurately.
In addition to being a stable vehicle for weapon practice, Abhyas can be used as an effective jammer platform, say reports.
The entire system on board Abhyas is developed indigenously.