The Indian Army is preparing to induct a new unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) called Netra, built by Ideaforge, for reconnaissance in anti-terror and counter-insurgency operations.

Netra is a completely autonomous hovering UAV suitable for short-range missions, which requires very short training time and minimal user assistance allowing the user to concentrate on the mission objective rather than the flying of the vehicle.

Netra weighs 1.5kg with a payload capacity of 300g and operational range of 1.5km at altitudes of over 100m for 30 minutes per battery charge, according to

The quick deployment time and vertical take-off and landing ability allows the vehicle to operate in confined areas performing anti-terrorist operations, counter-insurgency in forested areas, hostage situations, border infiltration monitoring as well as search and rescue operations.

The UAV features a high resolution 2.5X zoom camera with pan and tilt control that captures real-time live aerial images, and records the footage.

In addition, the vehicle has an in-built fail-safe mechanism that ensures the UAV returns to its home position in case of loss of communication or low battery.

The Defence Research and Development Organization collaborated with IdeaForge to refine the UAV as part of its preparations to pitch it to the Army.

The UAV is also expected to be inducted in a host of security forces, including the National Security Guard, Central Reserve Police Force and Border Security Force among others.

Netra will be showcased at Defence Expo in New Delhi from 15-18 February 2010.