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21 Jun 10. India has entered the global market to buy Air Defence guns to provide short range air defence to Vital Areas and Vital Positions from aerial threats. Request for Information [RFI] for the multi-million dollar contract has been sent to half a dozen overseas defence vendors in Europe, United States, Israel and Russia. Based on the RFI, a formal Request for Proposal will be drawn up in the next three months beginning the formal process of procurement.

The Air Defence guns will be used to defend the Vital Area and Vital Positions of the Indian Air Force.

The Air Defence guns should be chassis-mounted or towable, the target engagement capability should be against aircraft, UAVs, Cruise Missiles and Glide bombs and have an effective range against air targets ranging between 500 and 3000 meters or beyond; the effective height against air targets should be 1500 meters and beyond. The guns should be capable of engaging a target with the Electro-optical fire control system (EOFCS). The system not only detects a hostile target using a daylight camera or a thermal imager, tracks it, and finally engages it with the gun. They should also be able to operate in temperatures from very hot to very cold conditions, be easily transportable by rail, air and mobile on both metallic roads and cross-country.

The radar should be able to detect targets in an envelope of 360 degrees in azimuth, while the Detection Range should be 30 kilometres and above, and the Tracking Range should be 15 kilometers and above. Besides, the radar should have an IFF facility.

Indian defence ministry sources said, “India’s Air Defence Ground Environment System (ADGES)needs to be upgraded it has less than the required number of surveillance radars.

ADGES is a layered air defence system consisting of Mobile Observation Posts (MOPs)which are early warning mechanisms, the radar picket line and the Air Defence Control Centres (ADCC).

The MOPs are scattered along the borders at random intervals, ranging between 25 and 45 kilometres. They give the first warning of airborne intrusion and the general direction of the attack. The radar picket line, which lies about 150km behind the MOPs, consists of a number of radar clusters. These comprise three radar stations separated at a distance by surveillance radar. These radar pickets are responsible for giving accurate information on the intruding force to the Air Defence Control Centres (ADCC) located behind the radar picket line. The picket line and the ADCC are separated by a first layer of air defence weapons which are the first to engage the intruders. ADCCs also keep in touch with the Base Air Defence Zone (BADZ) control centres. The air defence systems take on the targets, getting the information from the BADZ and include Pechora air defence systems, OSA-AKA systems, the Igla system and the L-70 guns.

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