Successful maiden flight of Rustom-II
Heralding a new era in the indigenous development of unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV), Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) on November 16 successfully carried out the maiden flight of TAPAS 201 (Rusrom-II), a medium altitude long endurance (MALE) UAV. The test flight took place from Aeronautical Test Range (ATR), Chitradurga, 250 km from Bengaluru, which is a newly developed flight test range for the testing of UAVs and manned aircraft. The flight accomplished the main objectives of proving the flying platform, such as take-off, bank, level flight and landing, etc.
TAPAS 201, the MALE UAV, has been designed and developed by the Aeronautical Development Establishment (ADE), the Bengaluru-based premier lab of DRDO with HAL-BEL as the production partners. The UAV weighing two tonnes was put into air by a dedicated team of young scientists of DRDO. It was piloted (external and internal) by the pilots from the armed forces. It is also the first R&D prototype UAV which has undergone certification and qualification for the first flight from the Centre for Military Airworthiness & Certification (CEMILAC) and Directorate General of Aeronautical Quality Assurance (DGAQA).