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DRDO Lakshya - BRW Rich 200, 2016

Indian target drone system

Lakshya ("Target" in Sanskrit) is an Indian high-speed remote-controlled target drone system developed by the Aeronautical Development Establishment (ADE) of DRDO. A variant of Lakshya-1 is used to conduct discreet aerial reconnaissance of the battlefield and target acquisition.

The drone, remotely controlled by a ground control station, offers realistic drawn aerial targets for live fire training. The drone is launched from the ground or from the ship by a launcher with a length of. The rescue takes place via a two-stage parachute system developed by ADE (DRDO) for rescue on land or at sea. The drone has a crushable nose cone that absorbs the impact of the landing and minimizes damage. The trajectory can be controlled or preprogrammed depending on the type of mission.


The "Lakshya" of India's Indigenously Developed Ariel Unmanned Vehicle (UAV) traversing the Rajpath during the dress rehearsal for the 2004 Republic Day Parade in New Delhi on January 23, 2004

The pilotless target aircraft (PTA) requirement emerged in 1976. Feasibility studies were conducted by ADE to provide a targeting system that would meet the requirements of all three services of the armed forces. A qualitative inter-service requirement (ISQR) common to the three services was formulated by a working group set up by the Ministry of Defense in January 1977 and 35 ISQR points were determined. Based on a feasibility study carried out by ADE, the project for the design and development of Inter-Services PTA by ADE, which complies with the ISQR, was awarded by the government in September 1980 at a cost of £ 170 million. USD) including approves a currency element of GBP 80 million (USD 1.1 million). The development activity should be completed within five years. In parallel, a domestic PTA engine development project (PTAE-7) at an estimated cost of £ 45 million (US $ 630,900.00) was approved to Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) in September 1980 for a feasibility study and project proposal from HAL. The engine was to be developed concurrently with the PTA from HAL to September 1985. On January 24, 2001, HAL announced the successful test of the specially designed and developed remote-controlled PTAE-7 engine.

Between December 1985 and July 1986, four Lakshya PTA prototypes powered by Microturbo TRI-60-5 engines were brought to market for testing. While the first two launches were successful for planned flight times of 20 and 38 minutes respectively, the next two launches failed. By June 1994, 18 Lakshya PTA prototypes had been manufactured by ADE itself and 43 trials carried out, 24 of which were carried out between December 1985 and February 1992. Due to rigorous assessments and quality controls, a total of 10 prototypes were lost during the testing phase. The project was officially completed in June 1994 and a final final report was released in April 1995 after a total of £ 218.2 million (US $ 3.1 million) was spent had been. The first 6 Lakshya drones were handed over to the Indian Air Force in 1998. Laskhya units are manufactured and overhauled in the HAL aircraft division in Bangalore. The Lakshya was officially accepted into service by CAS AY Tipnis in the Interim Test Range (ITR) Chandipur on November 9, 2000. On May 9, 2002, an updated version of the Laskhya with the new engine from HAL was flown by ITR Chandipur to end user trials. On November 6, 2002, HAL announced that they had received an initial order for 25 Lakshya drones and that limited series production to fulfill the order for all three services had already begun. By January 16, 2003, the drone had completed over 100 flights.

A modified reconnaissance version of the Lakshya is under development. This version was equipped with angled cameras and a digital on-board computer with a faster data connection that allowed the drone to perform fully autonomous operations. This version was developed by Dr. VK Aatre, then Scientific Advisor to the Defense Minister, officially announced during his talk on "Development of Battlefields and the Role of Technology" organized by the Bangalore Science Forum on July 5, 2003.

India's Aeronautical Development Establishment (ADE) has just announced the successful flight test of a pilotless Lakshya-2 target drone. According to a December 21, 2010 DRDO statement, "users have indicated that they must fly pilotless target aircraft at very low altitudes (15-25 meters above sea level) in order to simulate the trajectory of low-level cruise missiles. Accordingly, ADE Lakshya prepared -2 ​​with the necessary hardware and software to meet these requirements. "

The flight test on December 20 lasted 32 minutes with a range of 10 km. The DRDO statement states: "The flight was stable and well controlled. A mobile launcher to launch the PTA from anywhere and GPS to locate it to restore it were successfully used." The Lakshya-2 also demonstrated several maneuvers. The system was designed so that two Lakshya targets can be flown and controlled from the common ground control station.

Current update

A Lakshya drone in 2008.

The extended version of the pilotless target aircraft (PTA) Lakshya-II was successfully tested again in the flight test on the Integrated Test Range (ITR) on January 27, 2012 km away from here. According to defense sources, the entire flight was pre-programmed and was completely successful.

Lakshya-II flew at an altitude of about 15 meters. In a flight of more than 30 minutes, a height of about 800 m was descended to only 12 m and the required altitude was maintained for the specified time before the automatic disembarkation was demonstrated. Various technologies and subsystems were demonstrated to prevent loss of mission and enable waypoint navigation mode while carrying target targets and flying. During the flight, one of the tow targets was released and the other deployed while waypoint navigation was activated.

Lakshya-II was designed and developed by the Bangalore-based Aeronautical Development Establishment, a leading DRDO laboratory specializing in UAVs and flight control systems.

On August 23, 2012, an Air Force version of the Lakshya-1 was tested with an advanced digitally controlled engine to verify the validity of the engine and the improvement in duration. The drone flew over 30 minutes.

On March 16, 2017, the Air Force version of Lakshya-2 was successfully tested for 30 minutes from the Integrated Test Range, Odisha.

Operating history

The Indian Air Force received the aircraft, ground systems and consumables in September 1999 and the Indian Navy should receive its first deliveries in November 2000. 23 pilotless target aircraft Lakshya were accepted into the defense services.

The cost of producing an airplane is 29,375,000 rupees ($ 450,000). Some countries such as Singapore, Malaysia and Israel have expressed an interest in a "paid demonstration" of the Lakshya plane as a target. A similar "paid demonstration" was held for the Israeli Air Force in 2002. This information was given by Defense Minister AK Antony on September 5, 2007.

Specifications (Lakshya PTA)

general characteristics

  • Length: 2,385 m (7 ft 10 in)
  • Span: 5 m (16 ft 5 in)
  • Wing area: 2.27 m (24.4 m²) ft)
  • Wing profile:NACA 64 A 008
  • Maximum take-off weight: 705 kg
  • Engine: 1 × HAL PTAE-7 turbojet, 3.73 kN (840 lbf) thrust


  • Top speed: Mach 0.7
  • Range: 150 km (93 mi, 81 nmi)
  • Service upper limit: 9,000 m (30,000 ft) 5,000 m (16,404 ft) with target drawn
  • Rate of climb: 25 m / s (4,900 ft / min)
  • Begin: Missile Assisted
  • Restoration: Two-stage parachute



See also


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