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From UAVs to a system preventing friendly fire, FICCI offers solutions to army

The army is poring over the report, titled 1st Compendium on Solutions to Problem Statements, to figure out how the solutions can be best used to increase the force’s efficiency.

india Updated: Apr 23, 2018 12:53 IST
Rahul Singh
Rahul Singh
New Delhi, Hindustan Times
Indian Army,unmanned aerial vehicles,UAVs
The sector has also come up with solutions to increase awareness about troop location during operations, make fuel storage safer at forward bases, and provide high-calorie food to improve the efficiency of soldiers at high altitudes. (AP file photo)

From palm-sized UAVs (unmanned aerial vehicles) for surveillance, drones capable of ferrying stores to high altitudes, identification friend or foe (IFF) systems, scaling up performance of Russian-origin tanks to puncture proof tyres, India’s private sector has offered a raft of solutions to problems being faced by the army, in a new report by the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI).

The sector has also come up with solutions to increase awareness about troop location during operations, make fuel storage safer at forward bases, and provide high-calorie food to improve the efficiency of soldiers at high altitudes, according to the report prepared by the industry body on solutions to problems identified by the Indian army.

The army is poring over the report, titled 1st Compendium on Solutions to Problem Statements, to figure out how the solutions can be best used to increase the force’s efficiency, said a senior army officer familiar with the force’s modernisation goals.

Among the companies that figure in the report is Bengaluru-based DC Enterprises that has claimed it can develop palm-sized UAVs, weighing 300gm-600gm, for reconnaissance, surveillance and detection of intruders in 12 to 18 months.

The firm has told the army that the nano UAV will have a range of 2km, endurance of 30 minutes and can be deployed in under three minutes.

The company has also offered drones that can carry 50kg loads to support troops in remote high-altitude areas, replacing mules and porters.

Another Bengaluru-based company, Alpha Design Technologies (ADT) Private Limited, has sought Rs3 crore from the army to develop IFF systems that will help identify friendly forces among hostile targets. ADT has claimed it can produce six to eight IFF systems for trials within a year.

In response to the problems identified by the army, New Delhi-based Tata Power SED has offered light-weight night vision devices, surveillance cameras than can detect humans from a distance of 20km at night, and sniper scopes to engage targets with greater precision, according to the report.

“The army is taking a proactive approach and encouraging the private sector to come up with solutions. A lot can be done if we can sustain the momentum,” an industry leader said.

Army chief General Bipin Rawat has conveyed to the private sector that the force was ready to accept the solutions even if the companies met 60%-70% of the army’s requirements, provided the firms kept working on improving the quality of their solutions.

The FICCI report has compiled solutions to 27 of the 130 problems enumerated by the Army Design Bureau (ADB) in three separate reports.

The ADB was launched in August 2016 and tasked with promoting research and development and acting as a bridge between the army and the private sector to meet the army’s requirements.

First Published: Apr 23, 2018 12:53 IST