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India’s state-run Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) has successfully conducted the test of ABHYAS – High-speed Expendable Aerial Target (HEAT). The test flight was carried out at Integrated Test Range, Balasore in Odisha.

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Defence Minister Rajnath Singh took to Twitter to congratulate DRDO for this feat.

“The DRDO achieved a milestone today with the successful flight test of ABHYAS – High-Speed Expandable Aerial Target from ITR Balasore. This can be used as a target for evaluation of various Missile systems. Congratulations to @DRDO_India & other stakeholders for this achievement,” he said in a tweet.

During the test campaign, the user requirement of 5 km flying altitude, vehicle speed of 0.5 mach, the endurance of 30 minutes and 2g turn capability of the test vehicle were successfully achieved, stated the press release.

The vehicle is designed and developed by Aeronautical Development Establishment (ADE), DRDO. Abhyas is launched using twin underslung booster and is powered by a small gas turbine engine and has MEMS-based Inertial Navigation System (INS) for navigation along with the Flight Control Computer (FCC) for guidance and control.

It is programmed for fully autonomous flight. The check out of air vehicle is done using laptop-based Ground Control Station (GCS).

“It proved its performance in a fully autonomous waypoint navigation mode,” said a DRDO source quoted by NDTV.