In news– India has successfully flight-tested ABHYAS –A High speed Expendable Aerial Target (HEAT) from the Integrated Test Range (ITR), Chandipur off the coast of Odisha.
- Abhyas has been developed by the Aeronautical Development Establishment (ADE), a Bengaluru-based facility of the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO).
- Abhyas – an originally Sanskrit word for practice or preparatory exercise, offers a realistic threat scenario for practice of various weapon systems and has been designed for autonomous flying with the help of an autopilot system onboard.
- It was developed by adopting DRDO’s Lakshya, its high-speed target drone system.
- The first launch of ABHYAS was held in Chitradurga Aeronautical Testing Range in 2012.
- The air vehicle was launched using twin under-slung boosters which provide the initial acceleration to the vehicle.
- It is powered by a small gas turbine engine to sustain a long endurance flight at high subsonic speed.
- The target aircraft is equipped with Micro-Electromechanical Systems-based Inertial Navigation System for navigation along with the Flight Control Computer for guidance and control.
- It is also equipped with Indigenous Radio Altimeter for very low altitude flight and Data Link for encrypted communication between the Ground Control Station and Target Aircraft.
- The aircraft is programmed for a fully autonomous flight, meaning that it flies under the control of automatic systems and needs no intervention from a human pilot.
- Abhyas has Radar cross-section (RCS), Visual and IR augmentation systems required for weapon practice.
- Its fuselage consists of five sections, namely the nose cone, equipment bay, fuel tank bay, air intake bay and tail cone.
- The vehicle can be used as a target for evaluation of various missile systems.
Aeronautical Development Establishment-
- It is a laboratory of India’s Defence Research and Development Organisation(DRDO).
- Located in Bangalore, its primary function is research and development in the field of military aviation.
- Its successful projects include-
- Lakshya (an aerial target).
- Nishant (a reconnaissance unmanned aerial vehicle).
- Nirbhay(a subsonic cruise missile).
- Flight simulators for (LCA, Ajit, Kiran, Mig-21) and
- Avionics packages for Tejas-LCA (display and FCC).
- It earlier worked on Sparrow (mini-UAV) and Ulka (aerial target).