IIT Mandi brings Academia, DRDO, DPSUs, and Armed Forces on one platform to foster Technologies for Defence through Innovative and Indigenous Solutions

On Day 4 of Indian Institute of Technology Mandi’s ongoing mega G20 – S20 Meet Academia, Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO), DPSUs, and Armed Forces came together to discuss and highlight enhancement of technological development through collaborative approach. The theme of this event was ‘Technology for Defence.’

Speaking during his welcome address, Prof. Laxmidhar Behera, Director, IIT Mandi, said, There is a need of engaging Academia, R&D Institutions, Industries, Startups and Armed Forces to come in active dialogue mode – where free and frank exchange of innovative ideas can germinate. I acknowledge my heartfelt gratitude to all the guests and participants. We look forward to a vibrant simulating session on technology for defence and IIT Mandi aims to contribute to the cause of defence which is paramount for our great nation,

Air Vice Marshal PKH Sinha (Retd), the Strategic Advisor of IIT Mandi coordinated the event along with Dr. Rajnish Sharma and emphasized to create an ecosystem that fosters innovation and encourage development of technologies for Defence usage.

Speaking during the event, Air Vice Marshal PKH Sinha (Retd), Chief Coordinator of Technology for Defence event, said, “The four pillars of Defence sector are: ‘Academia’, that researches in the niche and critical emerging technologies;, ‘Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO)’, that customize these technologies and hands it over to the industry for mass production, ‘Industry’, that makes it robust for the use of our troops, air warriors and sailors, and the ‘Defence Forces’ that finally use these innovations and technologies.”

Further, AVM Sinha added, “Today, there is an urgent need of synergy between these four pillars to build a strong foundation for niche Initiatives on Critical Emerging Technologies (iCET). I am sure, the Technology for Defence event at IIT Mandi’s G20 – S20 Meet will provide boost to India’s initiative of becoming Atmanirbhar.”

In addition to this, the event included multiple guest talks from DRDO and the public sector unit on the importance of technology for defence. Key highlights included:

Speaking about DRDO-Academia Partnership- Opportunities & Challenges, Hon’ble Chief Guest of the event, and Padma Shri, Dr Satish Kumar, Chairman ARMREB, DRDO, said, “Science alone can solve the problems of hunger, poverty, and Security. DRDO is engaged in developing defence technologies covering various disciplines such as Aeronautics, Electronics, Missiles, and Naval Systems, among others, with an aim to achieve self-reliance in critical defence technologies and systems while equipping our armed forces with state-of-art weapon systems in accordance with requirements. Unless we have a good ecosystem between Academia, R&D, and Industry, we cannot have the indigenization of the defence sector. I look forward to a successful collaboration with IIT Mandi to achieve this common goal.”

Speaking during the event, Dr Vikas Kumar, Chairman, Aeronautics Research & Development Board, DRDO, said,“With technological developments, Sustainability is the most important pillar for growth. There was a time when we used to equip our forces with world-class technologies developed by other countries, now, we are leading multiple projects on indigenizing the technologies for the world. The need of the day is,  Defence services to formulae and constitute a task force and I look forward to our inspiring researchers to come forward and collaborate with DRDO to achieve the goal of Atmanirbhar Bharat.”

Along with this, during discussion session at the conclave, it was informed by AVM Sinha that the Improvement proposed by Dr Gajendra Singh, Faculty at IIT Mandi, in the rope release mechanism of Indian Airforce helicopters was appreciated by the Commander of Base Repair Depot, Chandigarh. This improvement will improve the load carrying capacity and delivery of supplies.

Other key talks included:

·         Detonics, Shock, Blast & Impact: Research Opportunities in Terminal Ballistics Towards Atmanirbharta by Dr Prateek Kishore, Director, TBRL

·         Mountain Hazard Management in Indian Himalaya, An Overview, Challenges and Technological Requirements by Dr. Pramod K. Satyawali, Director, DGRE

·         Chem-Biodefence and DRDE by Dr BN Acharya, Head Tech Cord, DRDE

·         Roles and Responsibilities of Bharat Electronics Limited by Smt. Deepa Bajpayee, AGM, BEL – Panchkula

IIT Mandi is working actively in the field of Defence research and innovation. Recently, a team from the institute have developed an artificial material to make stealth vehicles and establishments less visible to radar. This technology can be used on window or glass panels of stealth vehicles and covert establishments due to its optical transparent nature. It has potential applications for RCS reduction and absorption of unwanted radiation leakages. Apart from this, IIT Mandi in collaboration with IAF’s Headquarters Maintenance Command (HQ MC) Nagpur have singned a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for

collaboration for research projects, and technology development, in the areas of artificial intelligence, machine learning, human-computer interaction, and decision support systems.

With its continuous efforts, IIT Mandi aims to support the Government of India’s goal to make India ‘Atmanirbhar’ in this Amritkal.

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