Rs 250 crore tender for bird detection radars scrapped
The government has scrapped a Rs 250-crore tender for buying bird detection and monitoring radars for the air force and the navy.
The request for proposal (RFP) for the radars was withdrawn on April 10 - for the second time in five years.
Military pilots have reported 504 bird hits - a serious flight safety hazard - between April 2011 and March 2014. The plan was to buy 39 radars for the air force and and six for the navy.
The defence ministry has not given any reasons for withdrawing the RFP issued in April 2012.
Bird strikes mostly take place at low altitude, during takeoff and final approach, and inflict maximum damage on the engines. Birds account for 10% of accidents.
Avian radars are capable of real-time detection and tracking of bird activity, predicting their flight path, issuing bird-strike alerts to pilots and forecasting patterns to manage the risk. Four firms were competing for the order.
The air force requires radars that can detect large birds (60 cm from beak to tail) at a distance of 11 km and small birds (21 cm) at six km, with the detection ceiling being more than 10,000 feet.