A drone that can team up with fighter jets to carry munitions into heavily defended enemy skies will be on display at Aero India 2021.
The Warrior aircraft, a full scale model of which will be showcased at the event, is India’s first ever semi-stealth drone. It is built by Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) as part of an indigenous programme called Combat Air Teaming System (CATS). The first Warrior prototypes are expected to fly within 3-5 years, NDTV reported Monday.
HAL has been working on drone warfare concepts for over 5 years now. It is presently working towards the design, development and integration of key subsystems of Warrior.
The Warrior drone is being designed to operate with India’s Tejas fighter. “Multiple Warriors will be commanded by a single Tejas,” said a source close to the project.
The idea is to maximise the effectiveness of every mission while reducing the potential of losing the lives of precious pilots since they would be accompanied by the drones which would protect them. “The Warrior is being armed with air-to-air and air-to-ground missiles,” which would be used to hit targets on the ground or in the air.
The Warrior, while not an out-and-out stealth platform, which would allow it to evade being picked up by radar, is classified ‘low observable’, which makes its detection challenging for contemporary systems.