The Annual Army Tech Seminar (ARTECH-2018), conducted at the Manekshaw Convention Centre, Delhi Cantonment, on January 8, 2018 also played host to displays of selected innovations of the Indian Army that originated from both within the Indian Army, as well as from Indian industries.
Shown above is a Royal Enfield 350 motorbike that was modified last year into a three-wheeler for towing the in-service 120mm Thomson-Brandt AM-50 mortars along mule-tracks in high-altitude terrain. When such 120mm mortars were ordered for deployment in Sikkim during the Doklam standoff, it as discovered that an eight-man crew would be required for dfisassembling each mortar, then strapping them up on a mule-train, and then trudging along for nine hours in order to reach the final destination. The Corps of Electrical & Mechanical Engineers then decided to modify the Royal Enfield 350 motorbike into a towing vehicle, and attach an Eicher-made small engine at the bike’s rear as a booster—all designed to tow the 120mm mortar. The end-result: such a contraption successfully deployed the mortars within a timeframe of one hour while cruising at a speed of 30kph! This modification kit has since been specified for all formations deployed throughout the LAC in Arunachal Pradesh, Sikkim, Uttarakhand, Himachal Pradesh and Jammu & Kashmir.
HIMSHAKTI & HIMRAAJ CIEWS
The Himshakti/Himraaj CIEWS is a lightweight version of the Corps-sized SAMYUKTA Mk.2 EWS that has been in service since the beginning of this decade.
It was on August 27, 2015 that the the Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle (GSLV) D-6, outfitted with the indigenous Cryogenic Upper Stage (CUS), successfully placed in orbit the GSAT-6/INSAT-4E communications satellite, which is ISRO’s first satellite to make use of an S-band unfurlable antenna having a diameter of six metres. This antenna is now being used for five spot beams over the Indian mainland, which will ensure connectivity with ahandheld devices for data, video or voice transfer. The spot beams exploit the frequency re-use scheme to increase frequency spectrum utilisation efficiency. GSAT-6 is the second satellite launched by ISRO for strategic military requirements. In 2013, it had launched GSAT-7, a dedicated communications satellite for the Indian Navy. The GSAT-6 is a 2,117kg satellite that now provides quality and secure communications for India’s armed forces. This also frees the IA’s soldiers from carrying bulky backpack communications equipment, since very small handheld devices can now be put to use (see photo below).