IMAGE COPY RIGHT Harsh Vardhan Thakur@hvtiaf

The third Stealth Wing Flying Test Bed (SWiFT) Prototype is seen under fabrication at a facility in Bangalore for the first time showcasing the actual size of the 1-ton UCAV which is 13 feet long, with a wingspan of over 16 feet. SWiFT is a Technological demonstrator for the bigger 10-12-ton Ghatak UCAV (Unmanned Combat Air Vehicle) program that will be developed by 2026-27.

SWiFT is powered by an NPO Saturn 36MT turbofan engine that allows it to cruise at 0.6 Mach and weighs just 1100kg with an range of 250km (LoS). SWiFT can become an Unmanned combat drone program if desired by the Indian Armed forces since it can carry two hardpoints with 50kg payload each.

SWiFT due to its stealth abilities to remain undetected in contested airspace where conventional unmanned combat drones are easy to be intercepted and can be brought down.

SWiFT prototypes will demonstrate many of the flight characters of the bigger Ghatak UCAV for the next 2-3 years before work on upscale prototypes commences that will be powered by a 48kN Class of Dry Kaveri engine that is under testing phase.

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