The air force has received its first indigenously designed and developed loitering munitions. These are capable of operating from all kinds of terrain and high altitude areas and can take down targets at a range of over 50 km, without exposing any personnel to risk. Developed by Tata Advanced Systems Limited (TASL), the autonomous system is designed for Vertical Take Off and Landing (VTOL) and has successfully demonstrated its capability to carry out precision strikes during trials and tests.
Overview of the news:
- Named the ALS 50, the munition – also known as a suicide drone – has been developed by a team of young engineers at TASL and can be scaled up to increase firepower as well as targeting distance. The system has been operated in high altitude areas during trials in Ladakh last year and in hot conditions in Rajasthan as well.
- The unique weapon can take off like a quadcopter and transition into fixed wing mode during flight for long distance travel. Capable of launching missions upto a distance of 50 km, the weapon enables real time targeting, either by the operator or autonomously.
- The VTOL capability gives the system the ability to operate in areas where limited space is available, like narrow valleys, fortified mountain positions, small jungle clearings and the decks of warships. These kinds of loitering munitions are required by the armed forces to accurately take down high value targets like command centres, missile launchers and enemy armour, without exposing any personnel to risk.
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