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SOURCE: RAUNAK KUNDE / NEWS BEAT / IDRW.ORG

Heron Mk II AT HAL BOOTH IN DEFENCE EXPO 2022

Following the closure of India’s Tapas Medium Altitude Long Endurance (MALE) UAV program due to technical shortcomings, Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) has stepped forward with an offer to locally manufacture its Heron Mk II unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) in collaboration with Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL). This proposal comes in the wake of IAI’s successful supply of Heron Mk II UAVs to the Indian Air Force (IAF) and the growing emphasis on indigenous manufacturing in the defence sector.

IAI’s Heron Mk II UAVs, recently procured by the Indian Air Force, have demonstrated advanced capabilities, prompting IAI to extend an offer for local manufacturing in collaboration with HAL. This proposal aligns with India’s push for self-reliance in defence manufacturing and technology, emphasizing the importance of indigenous production.

Israel’s Hermes 900 Starliners are already being locally manufactured in India by Adani Defence, boasting 60% indigenous content. Adani’s success in producing these UAVs has garnered attention, and the recent orders from the Indian Army and Navy further underscore the viability and potential of locally manufactured UAVs.

With the closure of the Tapas MALE UAV program, the Aeronautical Development Establishment (ADE) is currently focused on the development of the Archer-NG, a MALE UAV program that draws design parallels from the Heron Mk II. This synergy in design elements indicates a seamless integration of successful technologies into India’s UAV development initiatives.

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