(Autonomous Unmanned Research Aircraft)
|Unofficial artistic impression of AURA-I|
|Role||Unmanned Stealth Bomber|
|Primary user||Indian Air Force
AURA is an autonomous unmanned combat air vehicle (UCAV), being developed by the DRDO for the Indian Air Force. The design work on the UCAV is to be carried out by Aeronautical Development Agency (ADA). Details of the project are classified.
The AURA will be a stealth UCAV, capable of releasing missiles, bombs and precision-guided munitions. The programme is in its project definition stage. The design is in line with what former DRDO chief controller for Aeronautics said in 2007, that India's combat drone would be a stealthy flying-wing concept aircraft with internal weapons and a turbofan engine.The UCAV's design is similar to Northrop Grumman's B-2 Spirit.
The ADA describes the AURA as a "self-defending high-speed reconnaissance UAV with weapon firing capability". The first images released as part of a presentation shows the UAV as having a stealth design. The AURA will cruise at medium altitude and will be capable of carrying two or more guided strike weapons with on-board sensors for targeting and weapon guidance. The flight control system and data link packages of Aura (unmanned combat aerial vehicle) will be designed and developed jointly by ADA and Defense Electronic Application Laboratory.
DRDO's Chief Controller, R&D (aeronautics), Dr Prahlada said, "Capable of flying at altitudes of 30,000 feet and weighing less than 15 tonnes, the UCAVs will have rail-launching for the missiles, bombs and PGMs (precision-guided munitions) they will carry.". The DRDO is going to use a Kaveri engine to power this unmanned vehicle. The AURA will be approximately 15 tonnes aircraft with a range of 300+ km.
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