DRDO in dialogue with major firms to develop howitzers
New Delhi: DRDO is in talks with major private and public sector firms like Tata, Mahindra, L&T and BEL for developing an indigenous advanced artillery howitzer for the Army.
The premier defence research agency recently held an interaction with the stakeholders to explore the feasibility of involving Indian industries in the development of Advance Towed Artillery Guns System (ATAGS), DRDO officials said.
"Objective of the interaction was to explore and encourage participation of Indian industries in the ATAGS project and generate a base for its design, development, manufacturing and integration," one of the officials said.
DRDO is currently developing the 155 mm, 52 calibre ATAGS at the Pune-based Armament Research and Development Establishment (ARDE).
Some of the major private and public sector firms which participated in the interaction were Tata Power, L&T, Bharat Forge, Mahindra Defence System, BHEL and BEL, the officials said.
Improved firepower at longer ranges, higher accuracy and enhanced survivability are some of the primary requirements for this gun system, they said.
"Efforts are being made to develop new technologies for weapon platforms, automation and control systems, recoil management, materials to achieve improved weapon performance," another official said.
After the Bofors gun controversy in 1986, no new gun has been procured by the Army for its artillery units.
The Army is also hoping to induct the Bofors guns manufactured indigenously by the Ordnance Factory Board at its facilities in Jabalpur.