Tuesday, July 6, 2010

India Begins Global Search for UCAVs

India has entered the global market to purchase unmanned combat UAVs (UCAVs) following a request for information sent to defense companies in Europe, Israel, Russia and the United States.

UCAVs will be inducted in the Indian Air Force and used to fight terrorists in northern Jammu and Kashmir bordering Pakistan. The Air Force wants modern UCAVs with twin engines, low infrared signature, stealth features, electronic countermeasures and the ability to link with satellites.

The new UCAVs sought by India would be reusable and operate like combat fighter aircraft. Current drones in the inventory destroy themselves along with the target.

The total life expectancy of the UCAV should be at least 20 years and the drone should have advanced avionics and electronic warfare capabilities.

The Defence Ministry is also negotiating purchase of Israeli Harop loitering attack drones. The Harop is a vehicle-launched UAV controlled by a remote operator with a 51-pound warhead and capable of flying more than 1,000 kilometers and loitering for hours.

India is also developing a homemade UAV for use by the Navy.

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