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India has successfully demonstrated the flight of a new 10kg rotary wing unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV), developed by aerospace and defense company Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) in collaboration with academics. The helicopter UAV is powered by a two-stroke petrol engine with a twin blade main rotor and tail rotor.
The test flight lasted for about 10 minutes, during which the aircraft demonstrated various capabilities like attitude control, attitude hold mode, position control, autonomous hover and low-speed flight, maneuvering forward, backward and sideways, according to sputniknews.com.
Developed in association with the Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur (IITK), the vehicle can carry a payload of 2.5kg including live stream video camera. The helicopter’s range is 8km-10km and can fly continuously for up to one hour, according to airforce-technology.com.
The company statement said that with that demo, HAL’s Rotary Wing R&D Centre (RWR&DC) is well poised to employ its skills and capabilities to undertake the development of rotary UAVs of higher weight classes and weapons as payloads.
The RWR&DC designs and develops rotary wing platforms for military and civil operations, as well as para-military forces and homeland security. It developed the advanced light helicopter, which is being operated by the Indian Defence Forces.
HAL has developed control laws, a full authority flight controller, and other associated technologies such as autonomous navigation and ground control systems as part of the partnership with IITK.