Panchi, wheeled version of Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV)Nishant capable of taking-off and landing using small airstrips had its maiden flight lasting about 20 minutes. Today’s flight was preceded by a series of high speed taxi trials. SA to RM, Secretary. Department of Defence R&D & DG DRDO DrAvinashChander, congratulated the team for the success. The UAV Panchi has all the surveillance capabilities of UAV Nishant. However, it will have longer endurance as it does not have to carry the air bags and parachute system as in the case of UAV Nishant. DS and DG Aeronautical SystemsDr K Tamilmani said, “Aggressive efforts by the ADE (Aeronautical Development Establishment) team during the past 8 months in creating this version are commendable”.
The conventional NishantUAV already inducted in Army is a multi-mission UAV with Day/Night operational capability, launched from an all-terrain hydro-pneumatic launcher and is recovered with the help of on board parachute system and an underbelly airbag. It is designed for battlefield surveillance and reconnaissance, target tracking& localization, and artillery fire correction. The electro-optic payloads are mounted on a stabilized steerable platform. A sophisticated image processing system is used for analyzing the images transmitted from the UAV. The aircraft has a jam resistant command link and digital down link for transmission of imagery. The air vehicle has autonomous flight capabilities and is controlled from a user friendly Ground Control Station.