India’s indigenously developed long-endurance combat-capable drone, Rustom-II (TAPAS 201) successfully completed its maiden-flight.
The test flight took place from Aeronautical Test Range (ATR), Chitradurga, Karnataka, which is a newly developed flight test range for the testing of UAVs and manned aircraft.
During the test, TAPAS 201 accomplished the main objectives of proving the flying platform, such as take-off, bank, level flight and landing among others.
- RUSTOM–II is a Medium Altitude Long Endurance (MALE) UAV. The UAV weighs two tonnes. It has an endurance of 24 hours.
- It is multi-mission UAV which can conduct Intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance missions for the armed forces. It can also be used as an unmanned armed combat.
- It is capable to carry different combinations of payloads like Medium Range Electro Optic (MREO), Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) and Long Range Electro Optic (LREO).
- It can also carry Electronic Intelligence (ELINT), Communication Intelligence (COMINT) and Situational Awareness Payloads (SAP) to perform missions during day and night.
- It has been designed and developed by Aeronautical Development Establishment (ADE), the Bangalore-based lab of DRDO. HAL and BEL are the production partners.
- Rustom-II (TAPAS 201) is also first R&D prototype UAV which has undergone certification and qualification for the first flight from Centre for Military Airworthiness & Certification (CEMILAC) and Directorate General of Aeronautical Quality Assurance (DGAQA).