In a positive development, Government has accelerated the plans to develop an air-launched swarm drone system designed to attack enemy’s advanced defence systems of the kind deployed by China across the LAC in Ladakh, reports Economic Times.
The move, once manifested, would greatly reduce the vulnerability of pilots and fighter jets to the ground-based air defence systems of the enemy forces.
The Indian Air Force (IAF) is already on board the project, and it also involves at least two startups and the state-owned aerospace major Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL). The project also involves the Centre for Artificial Intelligence and Robotics (CAIR) which will help build the artificial intelligence (AI) capabilities for target acquisition.
Once developed, it would likely to involve a manned Jaguar land attack aircraft which would be capable of launching up to 24 killer drones which would then take down the individual enemy targets. Each Jaguar aircraft will be equipped with four pods which will each contain six killer drones.
It is being developed under the Combat Air Teaming Systems (CATS) project and is likely to be executed in four years. It is likely to cost the exchequer Rs 1,000 crore.