Chitradurga, February 25: Getting a massive breakthrough, the Defence Research and Development Organization (DRDO) on Sunday successfully flew its Rustom 2 at its Aeronautical Test Range (ATR) at Chalakere at Chitradurga.
Rustom 2 is a ‘Made in India’ unmanned combat air vehicle based on Rustom-H model which is often compared with Predator drones was successfully flown. DRDO in a press statement said, “DRDO successfully flew its Rustom 2 today at its Aeronautical Test Range (ATR) at Chalakere at Chitradurga. This flight assumes significance due to the fact that this is the first flight in user configuration with higher power engine. All parameters were normal.”
Rustom 2 is developed by DRDO for the three services, Indian Army, Indian Navy and the Indian Air Force of the Indian Armed Forces. Rustom is derived from the NAL's LCRA (Light Canard Research Aircraft) developed by a team under the leadership of late Prof Rustom Damania in the 1980s.
A medium-altitude long-endurance unmanned aerial vehicle, Rustom-2 is comparable to the American made Predator drone and can fly for 24 hours at stretch. It can conduct sustained surveillance and can carry weapons along with surveillance equipment.
There are three variants of the Rustom UAV:
Rustom-I: Tactical UAV with the endurance of 12 hours (based on NAL's LCRA which was inspired by Burt Rutan's Long-EZ).
Rustom-H: Larger UAV with a flight endurance of over 24 hours (completely different design from Rustom-1), higher range and service ceiling than Rustom-1.
Rustom-II: An unmanned combat air vehicle based on Rustom-H model. It is often compared with Predator drones.