The NPNT (No Permission-No Takeoff) rule is an integral part of legal drone flight in India. Obtaining an NPNT compliance certificate involves several layers of protocols to be followed which initially was a challenge for drone manufacturers. However, this hurdle is increasingly being dealt with by manufacturers and several Indian drones are ready to hit the skies. Here are some of the NPNT compliant drones in India:

Table of Contents

  1. The A200 Drone
  2. Patang by Skylark Drones
  3. Lookout VTOL-Lite
  4. Ninja UAV
  5. Insight PPK-Multicopter
  6. Agribot UAV (AGUAV)
  7. Prion Mk3
  8. Starlite
  9. Freebird Z1 A
  10. DH-Q4
  11. WHITE HAWK
  12. Staredge
  13. How are NPNT compliant drones registered?

1. The A200 Drone

This high-performance surveillance drone, developed by a Bangalore based company Asteria Aerospace, is the first drone to be registered in India. Primary tasks of the 2 kg drone are surveillance, security, and industrial survey. Integrated with Asteria’s intuitive ground and cloud-based technologies, it collects and analyzes data. A200 is a VTOL (Vertical Take-Off and Landing) drone which makes it extremely efficient at operating in constrained environments. The drone’s compact nature and portability give it an upper hand in a fast-paced industry.

Drone Category: Micro
Maximum Take-off Weight: 2kg
Maximum Altitude: 400ft
Payload Specification: Electro-optical camera

A200 by Asteria Aerospace
The A200 drone by Asteria Aerospace

2. Patang by Skylark Drones

The Patang drone was one of the first Indian drones to obtain an NPNT compliance certificate. The UAV is developed by a Bangalore-based startup, Skylark Drones. The company offers drone-based solutions in the area of infrastructure, public utilities, mining, and agriculture. Their drones help to track, analyze, and detect problems by creating a 3D model to digitize geographical features.

Drone Category: Micro
Maximum Take-off Weight: 1.9kg
Maximum Altitude: 1000ft
Payload Specification: RGB sensor – Sony A6000 camera

Patang by Skylark Drones
Mrinal Pai, COO & Mughilan TR, CEO of Skylark Drones.

3. Lookout VTOL-Lite

The Lookout VTOL-Lite is a micro category UAS (Unmanned Aerial System) developed by Throttle Aerospace. The drone has a considerate payload capacity and endurance in extreme weather. Among the many features, it hosts swappable sensors like EO/IR, RGB Radiometric and Multispectral sensors. The Lookout drone is efficient at precision agriculture, topographical mapping, industrial inspections and much more.

Drone Category: Micro
Maximum Take-off Weight: 2kg
Maximum Altitude: 400ft
Payload Specification: Fixed 24MP RGB camera(max 300gm)

NPNT compliant drones
The Lookout-VTOL RPAS by Throttle Aerospace

4. Ninja UAV

Developed by ideaForge, one of India’s oldest drone startup, the Ninja UAV offers great functionality and top-notch specifications. It has an operational range of up to 2 km, 25 minutes of flight time and 2 kg of takeoff weight. The Ninja can host different camera modules as payloads, such as daylight payload with 3x optical zoom, an HD imaging payload, and a thermal payload. Its main purpose is surveillance and mapping.

Drone Category: Micro
Maximum Take-off Weight: 1.989kg
Maximum Altitude: 400ft
Payload Specification: HD 1280X720p 3X Optical Zoom Daylight Standard Payload (Max. 325 gm)

NPNT compliant drones
Ninja UAV by ideaForge

5. Insight-PPK Multicopter

The Insight-PPK Multicopter was developed by the Bangalore-based company Aarav Unmanned Systems (AUS). This is a survey and mapping drone which is also NPNT compliant. It has a 3 km operational range, 30 minute flight time, and weighs 3.5 kg. This high-endurance drone claims to provide survey-grade accuracy, terrain-following and an in-built PPK Geotagger among several other features.

Drone Category: Small
Maximum Take-off Weight: 3.6kg
Maximum Altitude: 400ft
Payload Specification: RGB Sony RX100 (Max 380 gm)

NPNT compliant drones
Insight-PPK Multicopter by AUS

6. Agribot UAV (AGUAV)

Agribot is an agricultural drone registered by the company IoTechWorld Avigation Pvt. Ltd. founded by IIT graduates. The company specializes in aerial robotics and artificial intelligence. Agribot is the first agricultural drone and the heaviest civilian drone to be approved by the DGCA. Agribot is a hexacopter with 10L onboard-storage tank. The drone can spray over 30 acres of land in one day autonomously with a GPS precision of 50 cm.

Drone Category: Small
Maximum Take-off Weight: 23.2kg
Maximum Altitude: 33ft
Payload Specification: Agriculture sprayer with 10 L tank capacity

Agribot NPNT compliant drone by IoTechWorld Aviation Pvt. Ltd.
Agribot by IoTechWorld Aviation Pvt. Ltd.

7. Prion Mk3

The Prion Mk3 drone has been developed by UAVE Ltd., a UK-based company. The Prion Mk3 initially debuted in 2008 internationally and is a medium category drone weighing nearly 30kg. It has an operational range of over 1000km. The Prion Mk3 is a fixed-wing drone with several applications such as off-shore law enforcement, surveillance, reconnaissance, and surveys. After the introduction of the Indian drone laws, the Prion Mk3 has been successfully registered with the DGCA.

Drone Category: Medium
Maximum Take-off Weight: 42.88kg
Maximum Altitude: 12,100ft
Payload Specification: Meteorological instruments

Prion MK3 NPNT compliant drone
Prion Mk3 by UAVE Ltd.

8. Starlite

Starlite is a micro-surveillance drone developed by Hubblefly Technologies Pvt. Ltd. Starlite is a 4-rotor NPNT compliant drone with an electro-optical (EO) camera that can zoom up to 10x. This is greatly beneficial for low-light visibility. Additionally, the drone comes equipped with an autopilot module.

Drone Category: Micro
Maximum Take-off Weight: 1.92kg
Maximum Altitude: 9842.52ft
Payload Specification: 10x EO Camera

Starlite NPNT compliant drone by Hubblefly Technologies
Starlite by Hubblefly Technologies Pvt Ltd.

9. Freebird Z1 A

The Freebird Z1 A drone has been developed by the cyber-security company Ecom Infotech India Ltd. The drone falls under the small category and is a rotary drone. However, to learn more about more technical specifications of the drone you can contact the manufacturer here.

Drone Category: Small
Maximum Take-off Weight: 4kg
Maximum Altitude: 13,123ft
Payload Specification: Sony 1.0-type Exmor RS 13MP CMOS Image sensor with Gimbal Tarot model T-3D V

10. DH-Q4

The DH-Q4 or the DH-QAUD is a small category surveillance drone developed by a Chennai-based team called Dhaksha Unmanned Systems Pvt. Ltd. The DH-Q4 has both semi-autonomous and fully autonomous modes. It has an operational range of 4-5km. Additionally, it has an added night vision payload apart from its full HD daylight payload.

Drone Category: Small
Maximum Take-off Weight: 5.14kg
Maximum Altitude: 400ft
Payload Specification: Sky Eye-I 1080P 10X Zoom Camera with Gimbal

DH-Q4 NPNT compliant drone by team Dhaksha
DH-Q4 by Dhaksha Unmanned Systems Pvt. Ltd.

11. WHITE HAWK

WHITE HAWK is a flagship photography and surveillance drone created by a Bangalore-based aerospace company, Edall Systems. The WHITE HAWK features an extremely portable design that is suitable for single-person operation in any terrain. The drone is equipped with an HD camera, that supports 4k video, and a 3-axis stabilized gimbal for steady shots. The four-rotor drone has a 2km operational range.

Drone Category: Micro
Maximum Take-off Weight: 1.98kg
Maximum Altitude: 11,482.94ft
Payload Specification: Fixed Non-removable payload, 4K 16MP camera

WHITE HAWK NPNT compliant drones
WHITE HAWK by Edall Systems

12. Staredge

Staredge is another NPNT-compliant quadcopter by Hubblefly Technologies. It is specifically made for fulfilling mapping and surveillance requirements. The drone features a Sony A6000 camera to meet the professional requirements. It has a maximum operational range of 2km. Additionally, its foldable arms provide efficient portability.

Drone Category: Small
Maximum Take-off Weight: 4.25kg
Maximum Altitude: 400ft
Payload Specification: Sony Alpha 6000 Camera

Staredge NPNT compliant drone
Staredge by Hubblefly Technologies Pvt. Ltd.

How are NPNT compliant drones registered?

When a new drone is purchased it must be registered on the Digital Sky platform just like how a new automobile is registered at the RTO. As per NPNT regulations, a drone manufacturer is required to generate a Drone Key Pair, maintain a Management Server for UINs and registration records, getting a Digital Sky API, and several other crucial steps.

Four drone manufacturers on this list – Asteria Aerospace Pvt. Ltd., Aarav Unmanned Systems Pvt. Ltd., Hubblefly Technologies Pvt. Ltd., and Edall Systems, used the idroneport Management Server developed by Algopixel Technologies to complete the registration. The third-party management server comes with a desktop application to assist in the generation of a key pair and signing of data using a DSC Token. The iDronePort solution allows the developers to switch to Testbed mode which allows the developers to simulate the complete registration flow during the development process.

idroneport management server
The iDronePort Web App by Algopixel Technologies

It is estimated that the drone market in India is set to grow exponentially and is going to have thousands of registered drones flying. Moreover, with the drone regulations and infrastructure slowly falling in place, the number of NPNT compliant drones is going to rise. With the new UAS 2020 regulations draft and the ongoing BVLoS trials, the prospects for the Indian drone industry are looking brighter than ever.