HAL bags ADE-DRDO supply order for ABHYAS target platform

It is a feat spree for HAL, after signing a contract with Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL) for the development and supply of 20 types of systems for the LCA Tejas Mk1A program yesterday, the Indian state-owned aerospace and defence company has secured an order for manufacturing, assembly, integration, testing and supply of High-Speed Expendable Aerial Target (HEAT) System known as ABHYAS from Aeronautical Development Establishment, DRDO, conversely.

Post successful completion of this initial order, HAL would be identified as Development cum Production Partner (DcPP) for supply of this target system along with a private firm (50% of the volume). The platform is estimated to have large requirements from the tri-services, DRDO laboratories for evaluation trials of missile programs.

ABHYAS was first successfully flight-tested in May 2019 and subsequent evaluation trials are being conducted by ADE- DRDO. This order would mark the beginning of series production of ABHYAS.It is designed and developed by DRDO’s Aeronautical Development Establishment (ADE), Bengaluru.

The air vehicle is launched using twin under-slung boosters which provide the initial acceleration to the vehicle. It is powered by a gas turbine engine to sustain a long endurance flight at subsonic speed. The target aircraft is equipped with Micro Electromechanical System (MEMS) based Inertial Navigation System (INS) for navigation along with the Flight Control Computer (FCC) for guidance and control.

The vehicle is programmed for fully autonomous flight. The check-out of air vehicles is done using laptop-based Ground Control Station (GCS), as reported. 

The author is a Delhi-based, DCC qualified, defence beat writer and independent contributor to print and online publications