India's army has selected the SpyLite mini unmanned air vehicle offered by Cyient Solutions & Systems – a joint venture between local company Cyient and Israel's BlueBird Aero Systems – for a high-altitude surveillance requirement.
On 4 September, the company announced that the SpyLite was the only candidate to have met the army's need to perform real-time surveillance and target acquisition tasks during trials performed from 18,000ft above sea level, including in extreme weather conditions.
The UAV demonstrated quick operational readiness, from autonomous launch to precision recovery by parachute, during the trials. The activity included supplying real-time video footage by day and night, automatic return and recovery in a “no communication” situation, and the ability for an operator to control the system from a moving ground vehicle.
BlueBird chief executive Ronen Nadir says the Indian army requires a highly reliable, low-cost and field-proven UAV with high performance, diverse capabilities and ease of use.