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By Bulbul Singh

20 Feb 08. Defexpo 2008, India’s 5th Land and Naval Systems Exhibition held in New Delhi Feb. 16-19 saw displays of products which will cater to the immediate Indian army requirements concerning Mobile Command Posts, specialized vehicles and tactical communications systems. Last month Indian Army went on a global hunt to buy 72 Mobile Command Posts (MCPs) for control of a variety of Air Defence weapons.
Request for proposals were issued for the $250m order to overseas and domestic companies. With an eye on this order, India’s state-owned defence major Bangalore-based Bharat Earth Movers Ltd (BEML) unveiled the Command Post Vehicle at Defexpo 2008. The Command Posts have been designed jointly by Speck Systems Limited, a domestic private sector company. The Command Post is mounted on a Tatra 8×8 vehicle and deploys within 40 minutes, and services as a C2 operation station in the field, said an executive of Speck Systems Limited.

The specialized vehicle, designed to wade through water up to 1,400mm, will have advanced electronics imaging, communication and gun mounting with GPS.

The essential requirements of the Indian Army for the MCP capability to move cross-country in both plain and desert terrains and should have all weather operational capability. The command post should be able to receive target information from a Surveillance/Tactical Control Radar, process and then pass the target data to a subordinate post or to a weapon system, which may be either static or on the move. Besides, the system should be capable of performing C2 functions with near real-time data processing capability.
Thales of France, EADS of Germany, Bumar of Poland, Indra of Spain, Rafia SA of Czech Republic, Agat Scientific Production of Russia are the overseas companies which have received the RFP. The Indian companies which have received the bids include, Larsen & Toubro Ltd., Bharat Electronics Limited, Spec Systems Ltd, Tata Advance Material, Electronic Corporation of India Limited and BEML

Army’s TCS project:

Another highlight was the teaming of India’s defence major Tata and EADS to bid for the Indian Army’s $1bn Tactical Communication System [TCS] Requirement.
Tata Advanced Systems, a wholly owned subsidiary of Tata Industries along with leading Tata Technology Consultancy services and Tata Power SED announced the link with EADS Defense and Security to bid for the tactical communication project. The proposed $1bn Indian Army TCS is intended to replace its current AREN system.

Stefan Zoller, CEO of EADS Defence Security said, “India holds an important place on the world’s stage and the program recognizes the need for India’s armed forces to have the latest available technology”.

TCS is part the Indian Army’s quest to build a network-centric warfare system. Last year the Indian Army launched the Army Static Switched Communication Network (ASCON), called Mercury Thunder. ACSON is a digital, fully automated, secure and survivable static communication system that is based on microwave radio, optical-fiber cable, satellite and millimetre wave communication equipment,

RFPs for TCS will be requested this year. The RFP will be issued to several Indian and overseas defence companies. The domestic companies invited to bid include Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL), Tata Consultancy Services, Wipro Infotech Ltd, Tata Power Company Ltd, Electronic Corporation of India Limited and Indian Telephone Industries. Foreign companies invited include EADS of Germany, Elbit of Israel, Thales of France, General Dynamics of U.S., Siemens of Germany, Alcatel of France, Erickson of Sweden, and Singapore Technologies.

The project will use a variety of communication applications including wired or wireless equipments supporting voice, video, data, fax and other value added services. The TCS architecture will comprise secure radios, satellite terminal syste

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