In a significant stride towards bolstering India’s defense capabilities, the indigenous TAPAS UAV, also known as Rustom-II, is all set to undergo highly anticipated User trials later this month. Officials from the Indian Air Force (IAF) and the Indian Army will collaborate in conducting these trials, marking a crucial step towards the clearance for production. The User trials are scheduled to take place at ATR Chitradurga.

The TAPAS UAV has been developed in response to the tri-services’ Intelligence, Surveillance, Target Acquisition, Tracking, and Reconnaissance (ISTAR) needs. With its cutting-edge technology and advanced features, the TAPAS UAV holds the promise of significantly enhancing India’s aerial surveillance capabilities.

The IAF is designated as the lead service responsible for the procurement of these drones, highlighting their pivotal role in strengthening India’s defense infrastructure. Among all three defense forces, the IAF is slated to receive the largest number of TAPAS UAVs. The collective order for the TAPAS UAVs is expected to be approximately 97 units, making it a substantial investment in the country’s defense capabilities. This ‘Make-in-India’ project is valued at over Rs 10,000 crore and includes various Surveillance pods and sensors tailored to meet the specific requirements of each branch of the armed forces.

The TAPAS-BH 201 UAV, categorized as a Medium Altitude Long Endurance (MALE) drone, boasts an impressive operating altitude of 30,000 feet and an endurance of 24 hours. Its capabilities extend further with the integration of high-grade military Electro-Optical (EO) and Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) payloads. These advanced payloads promise to dramatically enhance the quality of images, ensuring optimal performance for ISTAR operations across various terrains.

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