‘We would soon have in our in­ven­tory the lat­est sur­veil­lance equip­ment, UAVS and com­mu­ni­ca­tion sys­tem’

Lt Gen­eral Vinod Naya­nar, Di­rec­tor Gen­eral of the Reg­i­ment of Ar­tillery, in an in­ter­view with said that the Ar­tillery is in the process of pro­cure­ment and de­vel­op­ment of gun sys­tems, am­mu­ni­tion (in­clud­ing pro­pel­lants and fuzes), sup­port sys­tems and net­wor

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am­mu­ni­tion like sen­sor fuzed mu­ni­tions, ter­mi­nally guided mu­ni­tions and tra­jec­tory cor­rectible mu­ni­tions and the same we hope will fruc­tify in the next few years, based on the pace of the pro­cure­ment process.

SP’s: What has been the re­sult of field­ing the ACCCS in the field for­ma­tions? DG:

ACCCS has been a land­mark achieve­ment for the Ar­tillery in its quest for net­work-cen­tric­ity. It has greatly en­hanced our ca­pa­bil­ity to de­liver highly ac­cu­rate and re­spon­sive fire power. The field­ing of the equip­ment has brought forth many chal­lenges which are be­ing ad­dressed quite suc­cess­fully. Some of these chal­lenges re­late to the types of com­mu­ni­ca­tion equip­ment be­ing used, as also in­te­gra­tion with other net­works. Highly in­no­va­tive meth­ods are be­ing looked at to ad­dress these chal­lenges.

SP’s: As part of the bat­tle­field man­age­ment sys­tem (BMS), is ev­ery ar­tillery weapon plat­form go­ing to be a ‘sit­u­a­tional aware­ness plat­form’ or is this be­ing done at the bat­tery level? DG:

Most of the “new gen­er­a­tion” guns avail­able world­wide are equipped with in­te­grated fire con­trol and com­mu­ni­ca­tion sys­tems which en­ables them to func­tion as au­ton­o­mous units. All the new gen­er­a­tion guns which are un­der pro­cure­ment/de­vel­op­ment for the In­dian Ar­tillery too, are en­vis­aged to have the above men­tioned ca­pa­bil­ity. This how­ever does not take away the ca­pa­bil­ity to also con­trol them at the bat­tery level (which in fact would be the norm), thus bring­ing in in­her­ent flex­i­bil­ity in the sys­tem.

SP’s: We be­lieve that the Ord­nance Fac­tory Board (OFB) has had the de­sign of the 155mm Bo­fors with them for the last two decades. Why have we not been able to de­sign and man­u­fac­ture 155mm how­itzers our­selves? Has the pri­vate sec­tor shown any in­ter­est in this field? DG:

The trans­fer of tech­nol­ogy by Bo­fors was avail­able with the OFB. Hith­erto, the tech­nol­ogy was utilised for pro­duc­tion of spare bar­rels, breech block and cer­tain other crit­i­cal parts of the gun. The tech­nol­ogy was also utilised for pro­duc­tion of am­mu­ni­tion. With a view to open an al­ter­nate av­enue for pro­cure­ment of gun sys­tem, OFB has been given an op­por­tu­nity. This is also in keep­ing with our long-term aim of achiev­ing sel­f­re­liance. The pri­vate sec­tor is be­ing used ex­ten­sively to source com­po­nents/sub­sys­tems for this project.

SP’s: Has the con­cept of Ar­tillery Di­vi­sions been suc­cess­ful? What are the ad­van­tages that have been ex­pe­ri­enced by group­ing Ar­tillery in a division level or­gan­i­sa­tion? DG:

Yes, the con­cept of Ar­tillery Division has been suc­cess­ful in pro­vid­ing a flex­i­ble, re­spon­sive and ef­fec­tive or­gan­i­sa­tion at the­atre level to plan, co­or­di­nate, em­ploy and ex­ploit fire­power to op­ti­mise ef­fec­tive­ness. It is a force mul­ti­plier and it has in­deed added a new di­men­sion to the con­cept of em­ploy­ment of Ar­tillery. Rock­ets, mis­siles and long-range guns with a va­ri­ety of am­mu­ni­tion in­clud­ing pre­ci­sion guided am­mu­ni­tion grouped in the Ar­tillery Division level or­gan­i­sa­tion gives us the ca­pa­bil­ity to con­cen­trate fire­power for the con­duct of tac­ti­cal degra­da­tion op­er­a­tions as well as fire sup­port to the for­ma­tions as part of over­all the­atre plan.

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