With an aim to carry out logistic operations in the Himalayan frontier, an Untethered Multi-copter payload, an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV), has been developed by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO). The UAV is capable of flying in the Himalayan environment with 5 kg of payload and even dropping bombs in the enemy areas. The multi-copter was displayed by DRDO in the 108th Indian Science Congress.

Mahesh Shahu, an official of DRDO said that, successful trials of the multi-copter were conducted in Sikkim at 14,000 ft altitude. The product would be ready for induction in the forces after two remaining successful trials, he said. The DRDO has developed the multi-copter with payload capacity from 5 kg to 25 kg and is working to increase the capacity up to 30 kg, he stated.

The multi-copter has an onboard Li-Ion battery bank. The advantage of the multi-copter is that, it has high payload capacity and endurance of 30 minutes. It can carry out autonomous missions with waypoint navigation up to 5 km radius. It has the feature of payload release. So it can travel to a designated location in auto mode and release payload and return to home location.

It can also be used to drop a bomb at an enemy site without risk of human loss, the official said. Similarly, the payload UAV would be helpful in immediately dropping medicines for the soldiers deployed at high altitude or war zone. Speed of multi-copter is 6 to 6 m/s and it can fly at up to 200 metres height in the wind speed of 30 kmph. Other features of the multi-copter include a beacon-based landing accuracy of 100 mm, ground vehicle follow mode and modular design for ease of operation.