Why Indian Army Is Seeking ‘Future Tanks’ Amid Tensions With China
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Why Indian Army Is Seeking ‘Future Tanks’ Amid Tensions With China

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The Army is looking for a “modern” battle tank platform that is not only superior but also “incorporates niche technologies” i.e Artificial Intelligence

Nearly a year after India’s Bhishma tanks were deployed in the Himalayas amid tensions between India and China along the Line of Control(LAC), according to the Request for Information(RFI) floated by the defence ministry, the Indian Army is looking to procure new generation “Future Tank” platform for “Future Ready Combat Vehicle” (FRCV) in a phased manner.

The Army intends to induct the “Future Tanks” by 2030.

The Indian Army has sought foreign takers for the tender and plans to procure the tanks under the “strategic partnership” route.

The RFI says that “in conformity with the emerging future threat spectrum and the technological advancements, the Indian Army intends to induct a new “state-of-the-art” “technology-enabled” tank to operate in varied terrain profile (High Altitude Areas, Plains/Riverine, Deserts/Semi-Deserts) across the current and future spectrum of conflict.

The RFI clearly states that the government has invited “responses only from foreign OEMs” with the end-user of the equipment being the Indian Army.

The last date of “acceptance of receipt of response” has been set for September 15.

The Army is looking for a “modern” battle tank platform that is not only superior but also “incorporates niche technologies” i.e Artificial Intelligence, see-through armour along with the ability to operate in a “network-centric environment.”

The new tanks are also required to be in continuous operations by day and night in real-time awareness, all-terrain agility and high mobility, precision lethal firepower, multi-layered protection with the use of niche technologies.

The Army needs the next generation battle tank to have high detection recognition and identification ranges with thermal night fighting and “lock on target” capability with smoke dischargers with anti-thermal and laser capability.

The Army wants the battle tank to have a loading system to provide auto-loading with minimum intervention and engagement time.

The Army has insisted the tank should be lightweight in order to achieve higher operational advantage, with “soft kill systems” and other countermeasures meaning laser warning system and RF sensors.

Not just this, along with the tank, the company should also be able to provide a family of combat vehicles for example recovery vehicle, bridge layer tank based on modularity and standardisation of platform, the Indian Army has stated in the RFI.

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