New as­sault ri­fles to re­place INSAS

Vayu Aerospace and Defence - - Aviation & Defence in India -

The DAC headed by De­fence Min­is­ter Nir­mala Sithara­man has ap­proved pro­pos­als val­ued at ap­prox­i­mately Rs 15,935 crore for 740,000 as­sault ri­fles for the three ser­vices. These ri­fles will re­place the present in­dige­nous INSAS and also be pro­duced in In­dia by the Ord­nance Fac­tory Board as also the pri­vate in­dus­try at an es­ti­mated cost of Rs 12,280 crore. The DAC has fast tracked pro­cure­ment of the three main per­sonal weapons, in­clud­ing ri­fles, car­bines and light ma­chine guns.

BSF to ac­quire UAVs

The Border Se­cu­rity Force (BSF) will ac­quire eight teth­ered un­manned aerial ve­hi­cles (UAVs) and a num­ber of ground sur­veil­lance radars (GSRs) to en­hance its ca­pa­bil­ity “for main­tain­ing con­stant vigil.” Teth­ered UAVs, un­like their con­ven­tional ro­tor wing multi-copter coun­ter­parts, are con­nected to a ground con­trol sta­tion with a ca­ble for con­tin­ued power sup­ply as well as ex­change of com­mand and data. Though their mo­bil­ity and the area of sur­veil­lance is re­stricted, such ma­chines have greater flight en­durance and can stay aloft for many hours.

GE and Tata’s

ACen­tre of Ex­cel­lence

t a cer­e­mony on 12 Fe­bru­ary 2018, GE and the Tata group ini­ti­ated es­tab­lish­ment of a Struc­tural Cen­tre of Ex­cel­lence (COE) fo­cused on aero-en­gine com­po­nents. The man­u­fac­tur­ing fa­cil­ity will be lo­cated in Adi­batla, Hy­der­abad and will in­cor­po­rate “lat­est tech­nolo­gies from GE and best man­u­fac­tur­ing prac­tices to de­liver com­plex high pre­ci­sion aero-en­gine com­po­nents to the world’s fastest-sell­ing jet en­gine, the CFM LEAP en­gine.” This is part of the strate­gic part­ner­ship signed in Novem­ber 2017 be­tween GE Avi­a­tion and Tata Ad­vanced Sys­tems Lim­ited (TASL) to join forces for man­u­fac­tur­ing, as­sem­bling, in­te­gra­tion and test­ing of air­craft com­po­nents.

The agree­ment for man­u­fac­tur­ing LEAP com­po­nents and es­tab­lish­ment of TASL as a COE pro­vides the op­por­tu­nity for TASL to ex­pand into other GE prod­uct lines in both com­mer­cial and mil­i­tary en­gines in the fu­ture. GE cur­rently pro­vides power plants and marine gas tur­bines for the Te­jas LCA Mk.1, Boe­ing P-8I and P-17 Shiva­lik- class frigates. In the near fu­ture, sev­eral other applications for GE en­gines in In­dia in­clude the LCA Mk.2, the P-17A and P-71 war­ships and AH-64 Apache at­tack he­li­copters.

QuEST Global in “un­prece­dented growth”

Global’s Vice Pres­i­dent - Aero De­fence Off­sets, Ashok Baweja, for­merly Chair­man of HAL has stated that the Com­pany “is uniquely po­si­tioned to cap­ture a sig­nif­i­cant share of the in­ter­na­tional Aero En­gine en­gi­neer­ing ser­vices mar­ket this year with multiple con­tract wins in the pipe­line from lead­ing Aero En­gine OEMs in North Amer­ica, Europe and Asia. Lever­ag­ing their in­dus­try ex­per­tise and strong tal­ent pool, which are among the most com­pe­tent and the largest in the in­dus­try, QuEST has been part­ner­ing with most of the lead­ing Aero En­gine OEMs across the globe like Gen­eral Elec­tric, Rolls Royce, Safran Air­craft En­gines, em­pow­er­ing them with piv­otal sup­port ser­vices rang­ing from de­sign, de­vel­op­ment, and man­u­fac­tur­ing en­gi­neer­ing to aftermarket ser­vices of Aero En­gines, thus con­tribut­ing to their high stan­dards of re­li­a­bil­ity and safety.” Ac­cord­ing to Baweja, “The Make in In­dia ini­tia­tive is cur­rently prompt­ing Aero En­gine OEMs to in­creas­ingly part­ner with Aero­space ser­vice providers based in In­dia, as it en­vis­ages the pro­duc­tion of a cer­tain per­cent­age of the air­craft in the coun­try. With the ro­bust ex­pe­ri­ence of hav­ing worked with global OEMs for the past two decades through our unique lo­cal global de­liv­ery model, these up­com­ing wins will be a sig­nif­i­cant op­por­tu­nity for QuEST to show­case our ex­per­tise.”

Thales and IIT Madras sign MoU

Thales and the In­dian In­sti­tute of Tech­nol­ogy Madras have signed a Mem­o­ran­dum of Un­der­stand­ing (MoU) to cre­ate a jointly su­per­vised PhD fel­low­ship pro­gramme in co­or­di­na­tion with CNRS, the cer­e­mony held in the pres­ence of Prakash Javadekar, Min­is­ter of Hu­man Re­source De­vel­op­ment, and M Frédérique Vi­dal, Min­is­ter of Higher Ed­u­ca­tion, Re­search and In­no­va­tion, Govern­ment of France, at The Knowl­edge Sum­mit. “Thales and IIT Madras look for­ward to strength­en­ing Indo-French sci­en­tific col­lab­o­ra­tion while con­tribut­ing to­wards the de­vel­op­ment of highly spe­cialised tech­ni­cal skills in In­dia.”

“IN watch on the IOR”

The In­dian Ocean Re­gion (IOR) is be­com­ing a new arena of ri­valry be­tween In­dia and China even as there were re­ports of 11 Chi­nese war­ships en­ter­ing the In­dian Ocean “amid a con­sti­tu­tional cri­sis in the tiny trop­i­cal is­land chain of Mal­dives, now un­der a state of emer­gency”. Al­though In­dian Navy sources stated that the Chi­nese con­voy had there­after turned back to the South China Sea, the IN has kept close watch on all the ‘choke’ and en­try points of the IOR. An In­dian Navy spokesper­son said, “The In­dian Navy has ro­bust mar­itime do­main aware­ness and has a clear pic­ture of what hap­pens in the IOR”.

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