Army unleashes ‘silent killer’ indigenous Nagastra-1 drones along Pakistan, China borders: Key features revealed

Solar Industries, based in Nagpur, has delivered the first batch of indigenously developed Nagastra-1 drones / Loitering Munitions to the Indian Army, marking a significant milestone in India’s defense preparedness and self-reliance in military technology.

Key Features of Nagastra-1 ‘Suicide Drone’

  • The Nagastra-1 is a UAV-based loitering munition designed to act as an aerial ambush system.
  • Its primary function is to hover above targets and execute precision strikes with GPS-enabled accuracy, achieving a remarkable precision of 2 meters.
  • Precision Strike Capability: In “Kamikaze mode,” Nagastra-1 can neutralize hostile threats by directly striking the target and destroying itself in the process.
  • High Altitude Operation: The drone can fly at altitudes over 4,500 meters, making it difficult to detect by radar.
  • Surveillance Equipment: It is equipped with day-night surveillance cameras and a warhead capable of defeating soft-skin targets.
  • Endurance and Range: The fixed-wing electric UAV can operate for 60 minutes, with a man-in-loop control range of 15 kilometers and an autonomous mode range of 30 kilometers.
  • Recovery Mechanism: The Nagastra-1 has an abort, recover, and reuse feature. If the target is not detected or the mission is aborted, it can be called back and safely landed using a parachute system, making it superior to similar systems developed by advanced countries.

Emergency Procurement and Delivery

Under the Indian Army’s Emergency Procurement Powers, an order was placed with Solar Industries’ Economic Explosives Ltd (EEL) for 480 Loitering Munitions.

Following successful pre-delivery inspections, EEL delivered 120 units to an Army Ammunition Depot. “

After successful completion of pre-delivery inspections, EEL delivered 120 Loiter Munitions to an Army Ammunition Depot,” defence officials told ANI.

Strategic Advantages

The Nagastra-1 drones are designed for precision strikes on enemy training camps, launch pads, and infiltrators, reducing the risk to soldiers.

These man-portable drones are silent due to their electric propulsion and low acoustic signature, making them ideal for infantry operations.

Manu Pubby from The Economic Times reported, “The drones are a cost-effective solution for targeting relatively lower-end threats, such as groups of infiltrating terrorists on the border.

The drones also feature a parachute recovery mechanism, allowing them to be retrieved and reused in case of an aborted mission.”

Indigenous Development and Cost Efficiency

Developed entirely in India by EEL, Nagastra-1 boasts over 75% indigenous content, reducing reliance on foreign sources.

This domestic production capability has resulted in significant cost savings compared to similar systems previously acquired from foreign vendors.

The drones are capable of operating in extreme temperatures and high-altitude conditions, further enhancing their strategic value.

Global Context and Future Prospects

Similar loitering munitions have been used extensively in recent conflicts, including the Ukraine-Russia war and the Armenia-Azerbaijan skirmishes.

The Indian Army’s investment in such technologies is part of a broader strategy to procure standoff weapons from the domestic industry. With the success of Nagastra-1, there is strong potential for exporting these munitions to friendly foreign nations.

The UAV-based weapon, designed for precision strikes and recovery, marks a significant advancement in domestic military technology.

With advanced features and operational flexibility, Nagastra-1 represents a crucial step in reducing reliance on foreign suppliers and boosting indigenous production