Nishant UAV successfully tested by army ahead of induction

Last Updated: Thu, Feb 03, 2011 15:20 hrs

New Delhi, Feb 3 (IANS) India's indigenous unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) Nishant has successfully completed its series of confirmatory trials carried out by the army at the Chandan ranges in Pokhran, Rajasthan, ahead of its induction.

'Nishant, the UAV, has successfully completed the series of confirmatory trials conducted by the Indian Army at Chandan Range Pokharan recently,' a Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) release said here Thursday.

Nishant is designed and developed by the Aeronautical Development Establishment (ADE) of DRDO that specialises in UAVs, flight control systems and simulators, in partnership with other DRDO laboratories such as Dehradun-based Defence Electronics Applications Laboratory (DEAL), Pune-based Research and Development Establishment (Engineers), and Agra-based Aerial Delivery Research & Development Establishment (ADRDE).

DRDO Chief Controller for Research and Development (Aeronautics and Services Interaction), Dr Prahlada, said the versatile Nishant is capable of being launched from a hydro-pneumatic launcher without the need of a runway.

The launch vehicle can be parked in a safe area and moved to any location for launching whenever required making it very versatile. The system consists of an air vehicle supported by ground control station equipment mounted on Tatra vehicles.

It has endurance up to four-and-half hours and has been designed to facilitate recovery at a desired place with the help of parachutes and landing bags. Nishant can be used in roles like battle field reconnaissance (day and night), surveillance, target tracking and localization and correction of artillery fire.

The payloads that can be carried onboard Nishant for surveillance include electro-optical, electronic intelligence and communication intelligence payloads. It can also be used for counter-insurgency operations.

The successful flight trials were conducted by the army before taking delivery of a set of four Nishants together with ground systems. The trials were witnessed by army's Director General (Artillery) Lt. Gen. Vinod Nayanar, ADE Director P.S. Krishnan and Nishant project director G. Sivasankaran.

'The performance of the pay load sensors in particular has been better than even the imported UAVs with the Army. It is expected that more of such equipment will soon be purchased by the users,' the release added.