The contract for procurement of an indigenously developed Integrated Mobile Camouflage System for mechanised forces was signed with Indian startup Hyper Stealth Technologies
The Indian Army has taken a significant step towards promoting indigenous defence manufacturing by awarding the first-ever procurement order of an Innovations for Defence Excellence (iDEX) project.
The contract for the procurement of the Integrated Mobile Camouflage System (IMCS) for Mechanised Forces was signed with Indian Startup M/s Hyper Stealth Technologies Pvt Ltd on Tuesday, March 14, 2023.
This was done in the presence of the Lt Gen JB Chaudhari, Deputy Chief of the Army Staff (CD&S) and Anurag Bajpai, Joint Secretary, DDP in Sena Bhawan.
IMCS is a niche technology that comprises low emissivity coatings and mobile camouflage system material that provides significant capability enhancement in stealth for Armoured Fighting Vehicles (AFVs).
The technology will enable the AFV to merge with a terrain background, achieving a reduction in the detection range of AFV when viewed through Hand Held Thermal Imager (HHTI) / Battle Field Surveillance Radar (BFSR) tank-based thermal camera under given environmental and weather conditions and signature management by controlling the Visual, Thermal, Infra-red & Radar Signatures of the object.
The IMCS technology will be a great leap in indigenous stealth technology and provide a boost to Aatmanirbharta, the Indian government's vision for self-reliance. This technology will also provide a significant edge to the Indian Army in modern warfare scenarios.
The iDEX project was launched by PM Narendra Modi during Def Expo India 2018. The aim of iDEX was to create an ecosystem to foster innovation and encourage technological development in Defence and Aerospace by engaging R&D Institutes, Academia, Industries including MSMEs, Start-Ups, Individual Innovators and provide them grants/ funding and other support to carry out R&D which has good potential for future adoption by Indian Defence and Aerospace Organisation.
The Defence Innovation Organisation (DIO) under the Ministry of Defence (DDP) manages and funds iDEX.
Over the past four years, iDEX under DIO has emerged as a front-runner in establishing the right kind of contact with Startups and Innovators and has gained substantial traction in the Defence Startup Community.
Currently, there are a total of 48 projects of the Indian Army as part of the Defence India Startup Challenge (DISC), Open Challenges, iDEX4 Fauji & iDEX PRIME scheme, which involve handholding of 41 Startups for the development of the latest state-of-the-art solutions for the challenges posed by the Indian Army.
For each challenge, a dedicated Nodal Officer & Establishment as Centre of Excellence from the Indian Army is nominated for handholding and providing continuous support in progressing their respective projects.
The revised methodology for iDEX was approved by the defence minister in April 2022, which ensures a significant reduction in the procurement timelines to approximately 24 weeks.
The IMCS was the first system to be trial evaluated as per the 'Single Stage Composite Trial' methodology based on the revised DAP 2020. The RFP was issued to the developing agency in September 2022, and within a record time of six months, the contract was signed on March 14, 2023.
Furthermore, the balance AoN (Acceptance of Necessity) accorded iDEX projects of the Indian Army are also under finalization, with a contract likely by mid-April 2023.
This is a significant milestone in the Indian Defence ecosystem, as it provides a significant impetus to the Make in India initiative and promotes indigenous research and development.
The Indian Army's procurement of the Integrated Mobile Camouflage System (IMCS) is a significant milestone towards promoting indigenous manufacturing in the Defence sector. The iDEX project provides a platform for startups and innovators to engage with.