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T h e O N LY j o u r n a l i n A s i a d e d i c a t e d t o L a n d F o r c e s

In This Issue

India is all set to join the Ballistic Missile Defence club. The recent successful test-fire of an interceptor system shows that a workable missile defence shield for the country is not a long way off.

Internet Protocol Security is complex evolutionary process and an important aspect of military communications. It assumes greater importance in view of the operationally sensitive data conveyed.



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45 YEARS FINAL.indd 1




E di torial The Indian electorate has once again proved its maturity and wisdom. The Congress-led UPA has been given an adequate majority and a fresh mandate to govern at a time when the country is facing serious challenges in the fields of human resource development, infrastructure and economic development, and national security. India’s immediate neighbourhood is on the boil once again. Sri Lanka has announced the military defeat of the LTTE. While no one is shedding tears for the rebel outfit, immediate humanitarian aid for its Tamil population together with a fair political solution would set the foundation for democracy and peace in the island nation’s embattled north. Pakistan’s military has finally decided to clear the Taliban from the Swat Valley and is employing tanks, heavy artillery, and attack helicopters to neutralise the militants. The collateral damage has resulted in the displacement of 1.85 million people of the Swat region already. It is obvious Islamabad has shown no restraint or mercy for its own people. Nepal continues to be an unstable democracy. The crisis following resignation of the Maoist Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahl Prachanda on May 5 goes on even though the decks have been cleared for Madhav Kumar Nepal of the CPN–UML to be the next Prime Minister of Nepal. In the current scenario, India will have to use all its political and diplomatic skills to ensure the country’s national interests are not jeopardised. This issue carries an interview of Signals Officer-in-Chief Lt General P. Mohapatra, and articles of topical interest on body armour, air defence radars, network centric warfare, communication security and artillery modernisation, among others.




“Since the Indian army is so large and do not have an unlimited budget, you must take advantage of the legacy equipment already in the field, and construct a Battle Management System that can utilise that technology.”—DANIEL VERWIEL, Director, BMS DSD, Northrop Grumman

Face t o Fa c e

Photographs: Sharad Saxena




Issue 3 • 2009

‘Ready for futuristic communication challenges’ Interacting with SP’s Editor-in-Chief Jayant Baranwal and SP’s Land Forces Editor Lieutenant General (Retd) V.K. Kapoor, Signals Officer-in-Chief Lieutenant General P. Mohapatra, AVSM, communicates the latest developments and distinctions of the Corps of Signals

SP’s Editor-in-Chief Jayant Baranwal presents a copy of SP’s Military Yearbook 2008-2009 to Defence Minister A.K. Antony

Lt General (Retd) V.K. Kapoor

SP’s Land Forces (SP’s): Define the roles and charter of duties of the Corps of Signals. Is the policy for planning communications at unit level also within the charter?

Signals Officer-in-Chief (SO-in-C): The role of Corps of Signals is to provide reliable communication support to the Indian Army (IA), across the entire spectrum of conflict as well as its peace-time

communication requirements. As communicators, the prime duty of Corps of Signals is to evolve, establish and maintain the communication channels of the IA, one of the largest standing armies in the world. Corps of Signals is an arm with varied commitments, and the task of Information Warriors is unique and challenging. Apart from providing the backbone and access to communication,

all communication needs of the entire IA are coordinated by the Corps. SP’s: Are the strategic and tactical level communications in the army keeping pace with the galloping field of communication technologies in the 21st century?

SO-in-C: Certainly, the journey of the Corps from Morse to Mouse has pre3/2009 SP’S LAND FORCES


conducting static and mobile operations?

SO-in-C: Yes, we are focused in acquiring state-of-the-art equipment in the field of electronic warfare. In any conflict, dominating electromagnetic spectrum is the first concern of any army. SP’s: Is the private industry geared to provide modern hardware and software technology to support the futuristic communication requirements?

sented new challenges at every turn and the Information Warriors of the Corps through their foresight, meticulous planning and execution, as also propelled by the impetus provided by the information revolution, have been successful in providing state-of-the-art info structure to the army at all times. The Corps is at present involved in several futuristic projects involving modernisation of existing systems and incorporating new systems, which will facilitate the IA’s march towards net-centricity, both at strategic and tactical levels. SP’s: Will the IA’s communications allow it the flexibility required for future operational settings, including Fourth Generation warfare which would decentralise command and control to lower tactical levels?

SO-in-C: The concept of Fourth Generation warfare is not new to the IA. In fact, as stated by the Chief of the Army Staff, the IA is today prepared to fight across the entire spectrum of conflict situations. To this extent, the Corps has been forward looking and has catered for all communication needs of conventional and asymmetric warfare with technology skills and finely honed drills and procedures that ensure provision of reliable and responsive communications in all contingencies. Our future network development strategies are aimed at ‘Anywhere, Anytime, Anyway and Any Device’ type of communication. We are, therefore, ready for any futuristic operational challenges. SP’s: What is the current status of modernisation projects, including the Tactical Communication System (TCS)?

SO-in-C: Modernisation projects planned by Corps of Signals are progressing well. While we are in the process of implementing certain earlier envisioned projects, we are also conceiving new projects in keeping with operational demands and evolving technological imperatives. We are giving full impetus to the project to facilitate early fructification. SP’s: How are you planning to meet the Network Centric Warfare (NCW) needs of the IA with the anticipated delay in establishing the TCS? What is the current status of NCW?

SO-in-C: The vision of the Corps of Signals is to attain and maintain informatics ascendancy by developing infrastructure to cater for NCW in a digitised battlefield of tomorrow. The aim and objective of the Corps is to facilitate the IA’s march towards net-centricity. TCS, being a large and technologically intensive project, will take some time to fructify. In the interim, adequate steps have been taken to ensure that our objectives are met, albeit in a manner that conforms with the development of other systems and applications. SP’s: Software Defined Radio (SDR) is a rapidly evolving technology that is receiving enormous recognition and generating widespread interest in the


SP’S LAND FORCE S 3/ 2 0 09

telecommunication industry and in the military. What are the policies in this regard at tactical and strategic levels?

SO-in-C: Software Defined Radio provides dynamic selections of parameters that help in dealing with problems due to differing standards and issues related to deployment of new series of equipment or those with varying features. Its adoption and adaptation will take some time as the technology is itself evolving. SDR technologies on offer from various firms are being seriously analysed by us. We are also looking at an indigenous SDR programme with the help of DRDO/PSU/ Indian Industry. SP’s: How are you planning to employ the legacy systems in the above context and what changes would this involve?

SO-in-C: Whenever any new technology is inducted, the aspect of backward compatibility is always factored in. Compatibility with legacy systems will certainly be of prime consideration while adopting newer technologies. SP’s: Can you give out the mobile communication needs of the army and how are these being met?

SO-in-C: Mobility is of essence especially in the Tactical Battle Area. An infantry foot soldier needs to communicate with his platoon/company commander and

“Our future network development strategies are aimed at ‘Anywhere, Anytime, Anyway and Any Device’ type of communication.” up the hierarchy; so does a tank or an Infantry combat vehicle, a commander on the move or any other mobile subscriber. The Corps of Signals were the pioneers in mobile communications in both the civil and, of course, the defence arena with a mobile communication subset in Army Radio Engineered Network. Today, we have assimilated the CDMA/ GSM technology. Technologies like WiMax, still in nascent stages of development, will also be absorbed to ensure high data rates as voice and data both would be important constituents of communication for future wars. SP’s: What all developments are being envisaged in Combat Net Radio (CNR)?

SO-in-C: Combat Net Radio, in my opinion, is an indispensable part of the inventory of any army because of its one-to-many capability. CNR must have extended frequency range for short, medium and long range communication. Backward compatibility will always be an important facet. Beyond Line of Sight Radios using one radio set in the vicinity to provide relay for the next are being studied. Data porting will be an important component.

SP’s: How are you planning to provide connectivity for Command Information and Decision Support System and for its various limbs like Air Defence Control and Reporting, Battle Management System (BMS), Artillery Command and Control System, and Battlefield Surveillance System in the absence of the TCS which is required to provide the communication backbone to the C4ISR?

SO-in-C: The domain of enhancing communication in the tactical battle area and the facilitation of synergy of elements in tactical battle field is a priority for the Corps. The Corps is fully equipped and capable of meeting the requirements of the various systems being fielded in the IA. The Corps has established a reliable, responsive, robust, secure and consolidated infrastructure which is capable of filling pre-TCS voids and meeting both the present and future communication related requirements of the environment. SP’s: How is the interoperability being ensured in the current and future development between the army, navy, air force and other concerned civil agencies?

SO-in-C: HQ IDS is the umbrella organisation responsible to facilitate inter-service cooperation at various levels. There is a need for a tri-service network to ensure inter operability between army, navy and air force. Efforts are on to achieve greater synergy of the forces though interoperability. SP’s: Considering China is so active in the field of cyber warfare, what steps are being taken to ensure cyber security in the army’s communication networks?

SO-in-C: Major initiative has been undertaken on the aspect of cyber security. We have created a dedicated organisation to look into cyber security and put in place a Computer Emergency Response Team in the army for incident management. Adequate cryptographic controls have been incorporated within the ambit of cyber security compliance framework. SP’s: What are your roles in low intensity conflict like terrorism and insurgencies?

SO-in-C: The role of communication cannot be undermined in any activity of the armed forces, be it conventional operations or counter insurgency/counter terrorist operations. The side with better and more reliable communications would invariably be at an advantage in any type of operation that the armed forces may undertake. Our units deployed with field formations which are undertaking counter insurgency and counter terrorist operations are performing in an exemplary fashion. Signalers are accompanying all troops undertaking such operations. We have a vast inventory of specialised equipment in the high frequency and very high frequency range which are being used for provision of communication for such operations. SP’s: Are we acquiring state-of-the-art equipment in the field of Electronic Warfare? Are our systems capable of

SO-in-C: In the present day scenario, technology gets obsolete every 18 months. This has led us to procure commercially-off-the shelf (COTS) equipment with necessary adaptations to meet requirement of the forces. Needless to say, induction of COTS equipment has reduced gestation period of projects and we are able to induct latest technology equipment for use in the Army. A lot has changed since the advent of the information revolution in the country, and the Indian industry has, apart from being extremely prompt in assimilating technology, also spearheaded efforts in some domains. The private industry has to now concentrate on indigenisation of component level/embedded systems and indigenous operating systems. SP’s: DEFCOM 2009 showcases ‘Informatics for the transformation of the defence force’ and ‘Technology development in the information age’. What is the basis of selecting such themes?

SO-in-C: Technology has and always will remain central to warfare, giving qualitative advantage to numerically smaller forces. The rate of technology development the world over has been phenomenal ushering in the introduction of new weapon systems. The present diverse nature of demands on our military and the accelerated pace of technological developments mandates transformation of the armed forces, resulting in a changed nature of military competition and cooperation through new combinations of concepts and capabilities that exploit our nation’s advantages and protect against our asymmetric vulnerabilities to sustain our strategic position. The effective information age adaptation begins with internal analysis and identification of strategic vision achieved through a process of transformation. Net centric concepts and Information superiority achieved by overwhelming technology development will assist the armed forces in the process. It is with this aim that ‘Informatics for Force Transformation and Technology Development in the Information Age’ has been chosen as the theme for DEFCOM 2009. SP’s: What future role do you envisage for the information warriors of the Corps of Signals?

SO-in-C: Information is a very potent weapon, especially when we are transiting from platform centric operations to network-centric operations. Signallers, who have traditionally been responsible for transfer of information, are therefore the warriors of the future in a digitised battle field and are rightly called ‘Information Warriors’. As technology advances and war fighting skills get refined, there would be increasing demands on the Corps for management of a complex system of networks, their convergence, ensuring quality of service, fine tuning of a plethora of information flow, enabling battlefield transparency, ensuing sensor to shooter links in near real time and above all maintaining the security of this gigantic network for information assurance while degrading adversarial information systems. Signals will be the nerve-centre of the future battle field to facilitate decision making by commanders at all levels, thus ensuring information ascendancy in the battlefield. SP




Ba l l i s ti c Mi s s i le D e fe n c e

Photographs: Sharad Saxena, Lockheed Martin and DRDO

Goal in Sight India’s recent successful test-fire of an interceptor system shows that a workable missile defence shield for the country is not a long way off LT GENERAL (RETD) S.R.R. AIYENGAR


Agni III Missile

n March 6, India successfully conducted the test of an interceptor missile to establish a Ballistic Missile Defence (BMD) shield as part of the network-centric warfare. The test was carried out from the Integrated Test Range (ITR) located on Wheeler Island near Dhamara off Orissa coast. ITR sources said the modified version of “Dhanush” missile, known as naval version of Prithvi, a surface-to-surface missile acting as an enemy missile, was test fired from naval ship INS Rajput anchored inside the Bay of Bengal. When it zeroed in on the Wheeler Island of Dhamara coast, a Prithvi Air Defence (PAD) missile—a ballistic missile (BM) with a range of 1,500 km, similar to Pakistan’s Ghauri—intercepted the incoming missile at an altitude of 70 to 80 km. The PAD was test fired from the Wheeler Island. Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) sources said the crucial test conducted for the third time proved the efficacy of a host of new technologies. The interceptor PAD missile has for the first time used a manoeuvrable warhead called Gimballed Directional Warhead (GDW) which has so far been used only in the US and Russia. The GDW can rotate 360 degrees. The first interceptor missile test was conducted on November 27, 2006 and waylaid an incoming BM in the exo-atmosphere at 48 km altitude. The second test was carried out on December 6, 2007 against a target missile at 15 km altitude in the endo-atmosphere, intercepting the “enemy” missile at an altitude of 70 to 80 km. The ground tests of the missile have been done on the directional warhead but it was for the first time the test was done on flight. Sources said intercepting a missile at a higher altitude of 80 km has the advantage as the debris will take longer to fall through the atmosphere before it hits the ground. In a typical war scenario, this would reduce the effect of any fallout of nuclear debris and the risk associated with radiation. The third test, sources said, would be part of India’s plan to deploy a two-layered BMD system in the coming years. The interceptor was a two-stage vehicle, with the first stage fuelled by liquid propellants and the second by solid propellants. It was 10 m long and weighed about 5.2 tonnes. The entire interceptor missile system was home grown, except for the radars that were acquired from Israel and France. The interceptor missile was guided by the Inertial Navigation system in mid-course and radio-frequency homing seeker in the end game, which implies destroying the incoming missile.

Ronald Reagan’s Strategic Defense Initiative (SDI) in 1983. Despite the substantial amounts spent on R&D, this failed to overcome all the technical obstacles, and in 1991, President George Bush announced a shift of emphasis to Theatre Missile Defence (TMD), perhaps extending—principally in collaboration with Russia—to Global Protection Against Limited Strike. This would consist of infra-red observation satellites to detect BM launches and to track the warheads, Brilliant Pebble satellites, for interception in space, and ground-based missiles to engage surviving BM. Total cost was estimated at $460 billion, but the plans were modified in 1993, when the SDI Office was reconstituted as the Ballistic Missile Defense Organisation, with a remit to focus more on operational TMD to the troops. The first combat use of BMD was the Patriot Advanced Capability-2 (PAC-2) missile in the Gulf War. Open sources indicate that about 40 per cent of Scuds engaged over Israel and Saudi Arabia was intercepted and of the intercepted missiles, 40 per cent were destroyed successfully. However, this overall

History of BMD from WWII

A worthwhile BMD system must be capable of performing a sequence of complex tasks, in about six minutes for a Scud-type missile or about 15 minutes for a long range TBM. First of all, the incoming threat must be detected: intelligence sources might provide forewarning that a missile attack is likely, and satellite or aerial surveillance can detect the characteristic infra-red ‘signature’ from a rocket launch. Radar on the ground would then focus in the direction of the threat and try to isolate the very weak reflection from

After World War II, the US attempted to develop anti-BM (ABM) systems that could defend the US mainland against InterContinental Ballistic Missiles (ICBMs), but it became apparent that not only would defence against an all-out attack be impractical, but ABM systems could seriously undermine mutually assured deterrence. The USSR and the US signed the ABM Treaty in 1972, in effect ending ABM development for the next decade, until President

India’s new cruise missile, the subsonic Nirbhay, is said to be 6 m in length with a 520 mm diameter; weighs 1,000 kg and has a 1,000 km range with a speed of 0.7 mach success rate of 16 per cent is questioned by some, with doubts raised as to whether any warhead was destroyed as a result of PAC-2. Failure to intercept could have been caused by errors in the radar and guidance systems and insufficient manoeuvrability; failure to destroy the warhead was most likely caused by the Scuds breaking up, generating a ‘threat cloud’ of debris which ‘decoyed’ the interceptors. The first of about 350 upgraded PAC-2 missiles are now entering service with the US Army. Russia also has a point defence capability based on its S-300P family of weapons, which gives a similar performance to Patriot. Russia exports this system to Bulgaria, China, Croatia, the Czech Republic and Iran. It is also learnt that PAC-3 of the US is a major upgrade of earlier Patriot Systems in terms of both coverage and lethality.

ABM: Key characteristics

a BM. Even a re-entry vehicle (RV) without stealth technology has a radar image similar to a small dustbin and travels at speeds up to several kilometres a second. Next, the target must be confirmed (whether it really is there and is not an airliner, legitimate space launch or any such vehicle) and the risk evaluated (from its heading, nature and where debris might fall if the BM is destroyed). A command decision is required, to sanction the launch of a counter-attack in the light of all the known circumstances before handing over all the tactical information to the fire control system, which must calculate an intercept point, choose, arm and fire the appropriate interceptor rounds. The task of interception itself is no mean feat—with closing speeds of up to 10km/ s—it has been described as equivalent to trying to shoot a high velocity bullet out of the sky with a second high power rifle. In fact, it can be even more difficult, because the RV can deploy decoys to confuse the interceptor, or debris from the booster or RV casing may have the same effect, forming a ‘threat cloud’ within which the RV must be targetted. Thus, the success of any one interceptor is far from certain, and a probability of kill of 50 to 80 per cent typically is claimed. In order to improve the chances of success, interceptors must be fired off in volleys, while using a layered defence can reduce the total number of rounds required by ending the sequence as soon as the RV has been destroyed. A BM can be targeted at all the three points in its trajectory boost or launch phase, mid-course in space or terminal phase during atmospheric descent. While the PAC-3 system intercepts hostile missiles in the lower atmosphere, the Arrow-2 system destroys them in stratosphere. India, on its part, is designing the BMD system to intercept an incoming missile at both the “second mid-course and terminal phases”, with a very high kill probability. The aim would be to first engage in exo (above 40 km) and then whatever remains, in endo (below 30 km). The BMD system will have to be tested for a variety of flight envelopes.

The Indian experience

The use of rockets and missiles by Indians in modern times dates back to the 18th century, during the period of ruler Hyder Ali and Tipu Sultan. Fighting the British colonial army, Tipu Sultan’s army used variety of rockets in supporting role. It was world’s first use of rockets for fighting modern wars. At the Battle of Seringapatnam in 1792, Indian soldiers launched a huge barrage of rockets against British troops. Tipu’s rockets were far more advanced than any other at the time and had been fully integrated into his army under special rocket brigades called Kushoons. These were extremely effective in battle and were known to have completely scattered the British armies. In the 20th century, the government of Independent India embarked on a number of plans to develop missiles which would strengthen India’s defences. In 1958, the government constituted the Special Weapons Development Team which would later become the Defence Research and Development Laboratory (DRDL), India’s

premier missile facility. Although the DRDL was initially located on the campus of the Delhi Science Centre, it was shifted to Hyderabad in 1962. In the 1960s, the DRDL was tasked with the design and development of an anti-tank missile for the Indian Army. However, the effort was terminated in 1970 when the Indian government decided to manufacture the SS II BI anti-tank missiles under licence from France. In the 1970s, the DRDL undertook two additional projects. The first, Project Valiant, involved the development of a long-range BM. The second, Project Devil, was aimed at reverse engineering the Soviet SA-2 surface-to-air missile. Both projects were considered failures and came to be viewed by India’s armed services and the government as competence-building exercises. Project Valiant was terminated in 1974; Project Devil ended in 1980. However, during the period 1972-80, the DRDL developed the infrastructure and facilities to undertake the design and development of missiles. The Indian government revived the missile programme during the 1980s under the rubric of the Integrated Guided Missile Development Programme (IGMDP). The IGMDP was launched in 1983 with the objective of developing five missile systems simultaneously: • Trishul: Short-range surface-to-air missile. • Akash: Medium-range surface-to-air missile. • Nag: Third-generation anti-tank guided missile. • Prithvi: Short-range surface-to-surface missile. • Agni-I: Intermediate-range surface-tosurface missile (technology demonstrator). In the 1990s, the missile programme was expanded to include the development of: • Agni II: A 2000-km range, single-stage version of Agni-I with a weight of 16 ton and a payload of 1000 kgs. • Surya: Medium-range version of the Agni BM. • Dhanush: Naval version of the Prithvi. • Sagarika: Short-range cruise/BM. • Astra: Beyond-the-visual-range air-toair missile. • BrahMos: A cruise missile, it is a joint collaborative effort with Russia. The Indian missile programme has been a largely indigenous one, with almost all of the equipment developed by Indian scientists. However, it was delayed by some years as more variants of Agni were expected. India’s most sophisticated intermediate range ballistic missile Agni-III was on July 8, 2007, test-fired from a range off the Orissa coast. The indigenously built surface-to-surface nuclear capable missile, with a range of 3,500 km, was test-fired from a fixed platform at the launch complex of the ITR. Described as the most powerful of India’s missiles developed by the DRDO, Agni-III has the capability of carrying a payload of 1,000 kg. In what could provide India greater strategic depth, the government announced its plan to develop 6,000-km range Agni-IV missile which will be capable of destroying targets deep in China. The announcement is seen as a move to send out strong signals to countries in the neighbourhood. Any missile with a range of more than Continued on page 7


SP’S LAND FORCE S 3/ 2 0 09


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Te chnolog y

ELectronic INTelligence The surveillance of the electromagnetic environment represents one of the main tasks of a nation’s military commitments and its basic purpose is two-fold: prevention and defence


he surveillance of the electromagnetic (e.m.) environment represents one of the main tasks of a nation’s military commitments and its basic purpose is two-fold: prevention and defence. The term ELINT (ELectronic INTelligence) is commonly used when the surveillance function is confined to noncommunication type emissions, such as radar emitters.

Passive Sensor


Passive Sensor


To perform the above function, a specific Passive Sensor has been designed that operates primarily in the radar bands. Moreover, the need of covering wide areas and acquiring inside , accurate and reliable information on the opponent’s EOB, requires the use of several Passive Sensors connected in a network arrangement and coordinated by a Supervisor Working post. The latter that can assign specific tasks to each operator (depending on high level

Passive Sensor


Passive Sensor




Supervisor WP


Higher Level Command

Block Diagram of a typical ELINT Network Configuration

The objective of prevention is to gain knowledge on the “radar” resources of a likely opponent for the purpose of determining and updating the deployment of the radar-associated weapon systems (known as Electronic Order of Battle - EOB), tracking of moving emitters, building up a local (and regional) air picture, in a selected area of interest and supplying this information to higher level commands for use at both tactical and strategic levels. Moreover, this function can be exploited also for defence purposes (ESM), since the surveillance of the e.m. environment allows detection of “threats” located “deep” in the “opponent’s” territory and thus to exploit this vital early warning information in order to effectively counter any likely aggression. The most appropriate technical solutions to meet the country’s comprehensive passive surveillance requirements could be the adoption of mobile land-based systems that can operate from fixed or mobile sites

Passive Sensor in armoured vehicle configuration


SP’S LAND FORCE S 3/ 2 0 09

operational requirements), such as: specific analysis of emitters, triangulation, reporting specific threats inside or outside of a selected area, tracking of moving emitters, cooperation for air picture building and/or updating, etc.. The Supervisor is typically connected to a higher level command. For ELINT purposes, all the acquired data (i.e., processed, intra-pulse, interpulses) is sent to a control centre (Electronic Warfare Analysis Centre: EWAC) for analysis and national Database and libraries upgrading. The use of a Passive Sensor network allows better emitter correlation for location and identification purposes and typically features a link to a higher level command for transferring both the EOB and detected emitter characteristics; this information is vital for both national data base updating and decision making purposes. The extensive use of Electronic Mapping System consents a very powerful display of the “operational scenario” in terms of

EWAC Internal Layout (Vehicle Installation)

deployment of the sensors, Passive overall sensor area coverage, EOB, routes of tracked moving emitters, etc. The Passive Sensor can be installed in fixed sites and/or shelters or armoured vehicles. These sensors can operate in standalone mode or can be fully remotable and controlled from an operator work post located in accordance with operational requirements. Each sensor can perform master or slave functions for triangulation purposes. The EWAC can also be installed in either fixed sites or mobile facilities. ELETTRONICA S.p.A. has acquired a long standing experience in the design and development of EW Systems to meet even the most demanding Customer ELINT requirements. The company’s ELINT Network is based on the ELT/888 Systems Family of Passive Sensors, the latest generation of ELINT systems for Data Collection (of radar emissions) and Surveillance (of the e.m. scenario), that can effectively perform the required functions by exploiting such unique features as: • high sensitivity interception (can intercept radar emitters even some hundreds of Km deep into enemy territory) • high measurement accuracy • high accuracy signal analysis; • high capability to operate in dense, complex and a-priori unknown e.m. scenarios; • automatic identification and classification of emissions; • modern and user-friendly Man/Machine Interface (based on window applications) • high level of interaction with a network Supervisor • high “interoperability”

Sensor in armoured vehicle configuration

ELINT Network are: • Tasks assignment for the Passive Sensors • Real-time data collection by EWAC of the information acquired by the Sensors • Acquiring, displaying and real-time updating of the processed threat scenario on digital Maps; • Monitoring of e.m. scenario evolution; • Correlation of the acquired information (Off-Line Analysis) for creating/updating Data Bases • Tracking of mobile emitters and route plotting on Maps • Capability to report the processed data to a higher level command The communication system can be a Customer Furnished Equipment, or can be supplied by ELETTRONICA. Civilian or military telephone lines (also optical fibre), V/UHF data link, satellite Systems can be used. It has to be highlighted that these systems have been checked and tested by the Indian Army Officers during a NCNC test and trials performed in Treviso (Italy) form 24th to 28th February 2008 utilizing systems made available for such activities by the Italian Army. The result of such field tests and relevant performance analysis lead to an official statement of “Full Compliance” with the requirement issued by the Indian Army delegation SP

ELT/888 Composition

The ELT/888 Passive Sensor basically consists of the following items: • Monopulse Directional Antenna • Equipment Rack (Superhet Receiver, Measuring Units, Operator Console) • Ancillary Units (GPS, Gyro Compass, Communication and data link system) • Data and voice link devices

ELINT Network Composition

The ELINT Network is composed of: • ELT/888 Passive Sensors (at least 3); • EWAC with Supervisor and Map capabilities • Communication System The main tasks and functions of the

Typical Equipment Rack Arrangement

Passive Sensor in Shelterised Configuration

The Monopulse Directional Antenna (Retracted for shelter transportation)

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Goal in Sight

Continued from page 4

PAC-3 Missile

Prithvi Missile

5,000 km stationed in south or central India would be out of the range of most capable missiles in Pakistan’s arsenal while it would be able to hit targets in eastern and northern China, with cities like Beijing and Shanghai within its ambit. DRDO’s top

scientist Dr V.K. Saraswat said the Agni-IV project was in the design stage and its trials and development could take a few years and its range is planned for 6000 km. Dr Saraswat said the DRDO would carry out three more tests of Agni-III over the next year. The 3,500-km range missile has the capacity to carry a nuclear payload of upto 1.5 tonnes. The success of Agni-III paves the way for India to build its truly intercontinental range missiles Agni-IV with a range of 5,000 km in the near future. It is also learnt that a miniaturised submarinelaunched version of the Agni-III, called Agni-III SL, is also being developed and could be test-fired shortly. The test of the missile comes in the backdrop of spy satellites showing China possessing five nuclear submarines equipped with long-range nuclear tipped missiles which are located at Sanya Island in the southern tip of Hanian Island off the South-China Sea. The DRDO scientist is also reported to have stated that India would have a complete BMD system in three years—ready and deployed. The system will have interceptor missiles that can hit targets 50 km above the atmosphere and supersonic interceptors that can eliminate endoatmospheric targets 15 km within the atmosphere. Further, India is reportedly in the intermediate stages of developing a new cruise missile, Nirbhay (dauntless). The subsonic Nirbhay is said to be 6 m in length with a 520 mm diameter; weighs 1,000 kg and has a 1,000 km range with a speed of 0.7 mach. The technology demonstrator flight is planned for end-2009.

Boost confidence

The expertise and technology developed

through the IGMDP has been successfully utilised in the BMD programme and is a major milestone in the direction of proving our capabilities in this field. The hat trick by the DRDO, as per Dr Saraswat, Programme Director, Air Defence, proves “the robustness, reliability and repeatability of the design of our system for engaging incoming BMs with a range of 300 to 1,500 km”. India became the fourth nation in the world to acquire such a capability and the third nation to develop it through indigenous effort. The mission’s success had boosted the confidence of DRDO scientists in networking an array of radars, optics, command, control and communications systems to track an incoming missile in real time, validate all the software computation and send the command to the seeker to home in on the target. The country has also embarked on a programme to indigenise radars to put in place a standalone approach. Dr Saraswat, while briefing journalists, mentioned that the integrated endo-atmospheric and exo-atmospheric tests were expected to be conducted by 2009-end. The first phase envisages ability to intercept incoming missiles with a range of 2,000 km. It is designed to engage multiple targets by firing a salvo of missiles. The second phase would be to engage the intercontinental BMs which a have a range of over 3,500 km. Neighbouring Pakistan has in its armory a range of missiles that can carry nuclear warheads. With a 700-kg payload, it is estimated that the Ghaznavi could have a range of about 350 km, the Shaheen-1 of about 500 km, the Ghauri of over 900 km and the Shaheen-II of

more than 1,100 km. The longer the reach and range of the missile the faster the warhead is propelled and the more difficult becomes the problem of interception. India’s concern with so many missiles in Pakistan’s armory possibly explains the motivation and eagerness to have some form of defence against such missiles. The recent successful test-fire of an interceptor system shows that a workable missile defence shield for the country is not a long way off. A DRDO spokesperson stated that it would take three to four years before India would be prepared to say that it could put in place a national missile defence system. The three successful tests of the indigenous BM shield must also be viewed in the context of reports that the US wants to sell its improved version of Patriot Advanced Capability-3 and Terminal High Altitude Area Defence Systems, which together are intended to provide protective shield against BMs. India should be wary of falling into this trap for such an option will demoralise the DRDO’s team of scientists and engineers, and the technical capability and expertise that has been so painstakingly built up over the years would go waste and eventually wither away. Expressing confidence in the BM programme, Dr Saraswat was hopeful that the first phase would be completed by 2010. As for cooperation from other countries, he said, it was sought to bridge the technical requirements and to accelerate technical development. SP The author was former Commandant of National Defence College, New Delhi, Defence Services Staff College, Wellington (Nilgiris) and Military College of Telecommunication Engineering, Mhow (Madhya Pradesh).



I ndustr y Speak

‘Take advantage of legacy


Daniel Verwiel, Director, Battle Management

SP’s Land Forces (SP’s): What is the basic architecture of the Battle Management Systems (BMS) designed for the US Army?

Daniel Verwiel (Verwiel): The US Army utilises a system called Force XXI Battle Command Brigade and Below (FBCB2) as its predominant BMS. The system is fielded to US Army units throughout the world today, and is battle tested in both Iraq and Afghanistan in support of US operations in both of these countries. The basic system is designed to provide situational awareness and command and control capability to the vehicle platform level, allowing you to know where you are as well as where all of your friends are. The components of the basic system include a vehicle mounted onboard computer, a Global Positioning System (GPS) locator, and transceivers for both line of sight (LOS) and beyond line of sight communications (BLOS). The onboard computer contains the software which provides for situational awareness and basic command and control functions. The GPS locator provides for the capability of always knowing its own location, information which is transmitted via LOS or BLOS transceiver to a network operations centre (NOC). At the NOC, the data which is transmitted from all vehicles in the field is combined into a common picture, which is retransmitted back to all of the vehicles, providing a single picture displaying the locations of friendly forces. LOS communication is based on a terrestrial radio network, whereas the BLOS communication relies on a satellite-based celestial network. With this capability, all of the vehicle platforms have the ability to tell where the buddies are, where the enemies are, as well as have access to relevant available information. In addition, the system provides a means of communications between vehicle platforms, including command and control data. SP’s: The BMS designed for the US Army caters for ‘brigade and below’. What would be the modifications required to cater for the Indian requirement of ‘battalion and below’?

Verwiel: I like to think of the US FBCB2 system as being more about the ‘soldier and platform and above’—not necessarily ‘brigade and below’. If you look at each one of the platforms, which includes calling a soldier a platform, each has the ability to generate its own situational awareness. If you have the ability to tell where you are, and the capability to transmit that data, you can send that up to an operations centre which can generate a common picture, which can


SP’S LAND FORCE S 3/ 2 0 09

be redistributed back to all of the platforms. So, be it company level, regiment level, battalion level or brigade level, you have the ability to structure it so that it can be used at any one of those levels. So for India, for a ‘battalion and below’—with the average battalion in India being at 150 platforms something like 650 or so soldiers—you can structure your system at the battalion level so they can share information amongst all the owners of the battalion. They can also share that information with the brigade, allowing for the creation of a system that can handle data consolidation and redistribution at any one of those levels. At the end of the day, it is about how useful the data is to the soldier and to the platform. SP’s: How do you suggest that we ensure that while the soldier handles his own mission, he does not get overloaded with information?

Verwiel: You can’t have the soldiers receiving every piece of data that might be made

which is necessary for operational work and filter the rest. The information required will change from one level to another, from battalion to battalion, from regiment to regiment, and from soldier to soldier—and vary even further, depending on the level of the organisation using or receiving the data. SP’s: The Indian Army constitutes a very large force. With restricted frequency spectrum, how would you ensure voicedata-video communication at unit level without electronic interference? What are the types of technologies available for spectrum management?

Verwiel: In a comprehensive BMS setup, you have a broad spectrum of capability that can be utilised to support the network. But you can never lose sight of the fact that the system can only be as strong as the network that will support it. Given the size of the Indian Army, it is not a stretch to think that the network could become overwhelmed. But there do exist a number of technolo-

SP’s Editor-in-Chief Jayant Baranwal with Verwiel

available in a BMS system. But with any software application, you always have the ability to filter data so that only relevant information is passed to the soldier, including the ability to request data on demand. So once you establish the individual platform needs that your soldiers require, you can get to them the data that they need or want. Via software filtering, you can strip out the information that they are not going to use. It should only give pieces of data the soldier needs to use, while other pieces of data you can put behind the scenes. With structured training, you ensure that the soldier knows how to use the data. You should get the data

gies that can be utilised to ensure that the communications network is optimised and not overwhelmed. One example is in setting up your Command and Control and Situational Awareness (C2SA) software so that its message formatting is structured in a way so as not to overwhelm the system with information. In addition, you might use data compression techniques to minimise the amount of data transmitted and the data bandwidth required. A second point is that you have to have one network that can utilise all the available transmission capabilities. Our approach is radio agnostic; meaning, we aren’t dependent on a par-

Photographs: Sharad Saxena

Systems DSD, Northrop Grumman Information Systems of Northrop Grumman Corporation painstakingly highlights the complex procedures and India-specific criteria for a comprehensive, but uncluttered, BMS modelled along the lines of the US Army’s FBCB2 ticular type of radio network. Rather, we might access already fielded and available terrestrial networks supporting the Indian Army, which allows you to utilise legacy networks already fielded. You must design a system that will take advantage of the radio networks that are already in the field. Then the issue becomes how to structure communication operations based on how the Indian Army operates. I could imagine a scenario right now within a battalion level communications cloud or within a company level cloud where they could talk to each other and deal with that local data only, without overwhelming the rest of the network. In this scenario, the company or battalion might have a single celestial link that would pass data up to the next level only when it is critical information, or is required to move to the next higher level, or to an adjacent communications cloud. This really comes down to what the army’s concept of operations will be for the BMS system. With the Concept of Operations (ConOps), the army decides how it wants to structure the system so it gets to its forces the C2SA data that a particular force(s) needs. You can think about a battalion or regiment that moves together in a war situation. They need to know about each other because all of them are in close proximity so they need to talk to and share data with each other for real time situation awareness. There are techniques to ensure that their C2SA keeps each other informed, and only transmits the data to the NOC on an intermittent basis, thereby not overwhelming the total network with data. As these troops move around, we know they are talking to each other. The data that reaches the NOC can then be retransmitted, again intermittently, back to all platforms for a complete picture. But it is less important for a troop in one area to know the real time exact location of another troop 20 miles away, than it is for him to know the location of those folks in his immediate vicinity. So, the concept is to keep data moving in real time amongst those troops that are in close proximity, and less than real time for the broader common picture. That is just an example of a concept of operations that allows you to make sure you can optimise the network. The real key is to make sure only the necessary data moves in real time and the rest of the data might be staged and prioritised. In your software you set a priority status so you can monitor how that traffic needs to move so you don’t lose anything.

facture. We have gained from our FBCB2 design application experience, developing a system architecture that works effectively, optimising the network, but also utilising both existing technology in addition to new capability. The real power is in the system. We consider ourselves to be a system integrator whose job is to create a system that will do exactly what it needs to do… in a very efficient manner and a very optimised manner utilising new technology, the latest technology, and existing technology. That’s a part that shouldn’t be lost on the India BMS. If you do system integration, you make it a cost effective system, one that is affordable. A system based on entirely new technology is not affordable. On that mixes the new with the old is.

SP’s: Can legacy equipment in use be revamped and employed in the BMS designed for the Indian Army?

Verwiel: The US Army is a good example of how to utilise legacy systems for BMS. Any military can’t really afford to put a brand new system into use, and require a completely new set of radio technology when you are potentially fielding to hundreds of thousands of platforms. The cost to do this is prohibitive. So, in a BMS set up, it is wise to re-evaluate what existing fielded equipment can be utilised to support the system. Can you revamp or reutilise existing equipment? Absolutely. In the US, the army took advantage of existing radios, like SINGCARS and EPLRS, and developed systems that could use these radios. There are other examples as well. Of course, it’s a lot easier today than it might have been 15 or 20 years ago. Today, you can take the legacy applications and retool to utilise it. Since the Indian Army is so large and you don’t have an unlimited budget, you must take advantage of the legacy equipment already in the field, and construct a system that can utilise that technology. SP’s: Would software defined radios (SDR) be necessary for the BMS?

Verwiel: Not necessarily. But if you ask me, if SDR can provide you an added capability and perhaps advantage, the answer is, yes. This gets back to structuring and offering the army a communication operation that gives you the ability to better optimise the network, and there are potential cost advantages in using SDR. But do you need to employ this groundbreaking technology? The answer is no. With FBCB2 today, the US Army does not use SDRs. The system works quite fine with its combination of terrestrial radios and commercial satellite capability. And it is constantly evaluating the network, which supports tens of thousands of nodes. The US Army is always evaluating the network for its next generation radio. SDR is one of the candidates it looks at, but it is certainly not the only candidate. Again, with tens or hundreds of thousand of nodes, the cost to field new radios is always a top issue. SP’s: What would be the approximate cost of digitising a Brigade group?

Verwiel: At this stage of the BMS development, it would be very premature to discuss costs at any of the different levels. Costing is an exercise that is very much part of the process that the Indian Army has to go through before designing its qualitative requirements. Once a ConOps is designed, a thorough cost-benefit analysis will need to be performed, looking at the different types of operational requirements; and these varying estimates could be very wide ranging. So it would be a little premature to get into a discussion around costs. SP’s: What is the type of information that can be made available to a soldier on the battlefield? How does the BMS ensure this?

Verwiel: Again, I will use FBCB2 as an example. There are physics limitations on things like bandwidth and the capacity of data which can be transmitted. For those units that use SATCOM based networks, the data transmission rate is pretty small. You really can’t get a whole lot of information. But for basic C2SA, it’s effective; it does what it exactly needs, and has for the last five years. The US Army has been happy with the promise that has come with the network. So if the original purpose of the FBCB2 system was to identify ‘where am I, where are my buddies, where are my enemies, where are my points of interest, and do I have the ability to talk to everyone’, then it has accomplished that objective. The system gives the soldier situational awareness, and it gives them command and control information, a whole set of other information, including the ability to text message from one platform to another. But as we look to the next generation of systems, there is a new demand for more

SP’s: How would you compare the strengths of your BMS centric programme with other such systems?

“Since the Indian Army is so large and do not have an unlimited budget, you must take advantage of the legacy equipment already in the field, and construct a system that can utilise that technology.” information. As the systems have become more necessary, available and relied upon, so has the demand for greater amounts of information. The soldier now wants more intelligence in the field—pictures, video. Basically, the ability to have more information to make his job safer and more effective. This generates need for a lot of information that they haven’t had access to in the past, so we are developing a more robust system that can handle this demand, with the ability to move information at higher data rates. We are working on new technologies, as are many other companies, that will allow transmission of more data. That’s the long answer. The short answer is that in today’s BMS system, you will get all the data you need and you will be able to have text messaging and clear control. Tomorrow’s system will depend on the types of devices we can put in the field to make the network more robust. They will be able to get video and audio capability, they will be able to get much broader text messaging and e-mail capability. This will be from the top levels (division, brigade and battalion) down to the soldier level, and will include the ability to move intelligence data. There are a number of different applications but it depends on how powerful you can make that network.

“System integration is a cost effective system, one that is affordable. A system based on entirely new technology is not affordable.” SP’s: How does the BMS ensure the connectivity to a brigade, division and corps?

Verwiel: The nature of the question gets back to the network. The system is only as powerful as its network. Taking FBCB2 as an example as we work, we have set up network redundancy, ensuring that if one part of the network goes down, you have the ability to utilise another part of the network. One concept employed is the hybrid network architecture, that has both a terrestrial base and a celestial base. In the US Army, the concept might include that every platform has the ability to operate over a terrestrial network, as well as a celestial network. If one goes down you always have the ability to operate over the other network and pass data back and forth on a periodic basis. In addition, there is redundancy built

within the network. For example, with FBCB2, it utilises several different satellites for the transmission of data. The bottom line is that there are multiple redundancies in place to make sure that if one part of the network goes down you have access to another part of the network connection. This is also where taking advantage of legacy technologies is very important. Redundancy is the key and with available communications technologies, such as cellular, meshnet, 4G, 3G, basic terrestrial and Satcom, there is much to leverage. There are a lot of different redundancies that you can build into the system, and that is what India’s BMS is looking for—how to get these devices and technologies into a broad BMS. SP’s: Is a flatter organisation necessary in a network centric environment?

Verwiel: I don’t think so at all. What you must determine is the fastest way to get information and orders to the edge of the organisation—and this often has little to do with the BMS technology. Getting information and authorised decision as quickly as possible from the top of the chain of command to the bottom of the chain is imperative, regardless of how flat or tall the organisation is. The technology is neither going to require that you have a flat organisation to do that, nor does it need a multitiered organisation. Flat or tall, it doesn’t really matter as far the network or technology is concerned. Once you decide how your organisation is to be set up, and how you want that command structure to work, you can set your network accordingly. SP’s: What are the strengths of Northrop Grumman in the field of C4ISR?

Verwiel: Northrop Grumman is one of the few companies worldwide whose primary focus is to develop and implement systems, principally accomplished by partnering with other organisations and companies. We are a part of Northrop Grumman’s Information Systems Sector. We are system integrators and our expertise is that we are a system engineering house and we don’t necessarily view ourselves as an agent to solve any particular aspect of C4ISR. Our job is to make all the elements work together. So our strength is in system integration. We take a variety of platforms and technologies, and are able to tie them together to provide a more powerful system that a user can take advantage of. The FBCB2 presents a good example of what we have done: designed technology to be utilised, and handed it to other companies to manu-

Verwiel: I think the biggest advantage is that we have a system that is battle tested. It’s been fielded to nearly 70,000 platforms in a battle environment. When we look at the competition, we don’t see anybody who has that type of legacy or real life experience with users who are using the system. It really is a leap (of technology) from where the system was even 15 years ago, and now the users simply expect it to do a lot more. Also, when I look at our competition, I don’t see any company which has a truly scalable system that’s been demonstrated to this level in battle. There a lot of systems out there that are trying to get there, which are struggling to get there, but there are no systems aside from ours that have successfully been used on even hundreds of platforms, whereas the Northrop Grumman system is working today on tens of thousands of platforms. I have difficulty believing that there is any solution in the field that can really compete with what we have done today with FBCB2. Our greatest success is that it has been put through operational scenarios which has given us the unique ability to see the system in action, and then to talk with soldiers who use the system, and make the improvements that the user needs and demands. We are using real time feedback from a theatre of war to implement new developments. I think we are quite far ahead of our competition because we are getting the real time, real life feedback from the users, and constantly updating the system to implement those needs. No one else can make that claim. SP’s: Where are all your systems deployed? How do the users view them? Are there any particular references that you may wish to give?

Verwiel: Well, I’ll have to see the list to take on this one. Our biggest test was the US Army with FBCB2, and represents our single largest customer. FBCB2 is also used by the UK and Australian defence forces. Much lower in numbers, but it gives them an inter-connection with the US system so that they have access to joint data. The feedback has been fantastic. Everybody who sees the system, and uses it for the first time wants more of it. We are looking at how to get more information, how do faster transmission of information for the next generation, and we take user feedback to build on those capabilities. A lot of international customers, including India, are looking for the same capability. One of our never ending issues is in dealing with the nuances of international trade law and that’s a little bit of an obstacle we have in promoting “FBCB2 like” solutions. Many countries want capabilities just like that. We have accomplished something great, and quite frankly, we see our competitors trying to replicate this system because of its success. But because of some of the export issues, it does create opportunities for international companies to pursue the development of FBCB2 like products. SP 3/2009 SP’S LAND FORCES


S e curity

‘We are seeing less of red tape-ism’

Basic & Best of Body Armour Photograph:

One of the newest types of body armour is both flexible and lightweight—achieved by introducing liquid in the existing armour materials LT GENERAL (RETD) V.K. KAPOOR


ow intensity conflict in Jammu and Kashmir, the Northeast and in the hinterland of India against the Naxalites, besides increasing violence due to acts of terror both in India and abroad has stepped up the demand for body armour not only for the armed forces and the police, but also for individuals (businessmen, politicians, and other high profile personages). Today, lightweight body armour vests have become an integral part of the attire of such people. The basic idea behind body armour—that the projectile must be prevented from reaching the body of a person—has not changed since the ancient times. Another requirement is that it must diffuse the weapon’s energy so that the final impact causes less damage. Over the years, developments have ensured stronger and more advanced armour to protect against increasingly sophisticated weapons. However, despite these improvements, modern body armour still has some of the same shortcomings as ancient forms of armour. Whether it’s made from metal plates or layers of fabric, the armour is often heavy and bulky. Rigidity of the material also makes it impractical for use on arms, legs and necks, and hence, in most cases, it protects only the head and torso.

Bulletproof vest

A bulletproof vest absorbs the impact from projectiles fired by rifles/revolvers/stenmachine carbines and shrapnel fragments from explosions. This protection is for the upper body or the torso. Soft vests are made from many layers of woven or laminated fibers and protect individuals from projectiles fired from certain handguns, shotguns, and small fragments from explosives such as hand grenades. When metal or ceramic plates are used with a soft vest, it can also protect against shots fired from rifles. In

combination with metallic components or tightly-woven fiber layers, soft armour can offer some protection against stab and slash from a knife. Soft vests are commonly worn by police forces, private citizens and private security guards or bodyguards, and hard-plate reinforced vests are mainly worn by combat soldiers as well as police tactical units and hostage rescue teams. While a vest can prevent bullet penetration, the vest and wearer still absorb the bullet’s energy. Even without penetration, modern pistol bullets contain enough energy to cause blunt force trauma under the impact point. Vests’ specifications include both penetration resistance requirements and limits on the amount of impact energy delivered to the body. Textile vests may be augmented with metal (steel or titanium), ceramic or polyethylene plates for extra protection to vital areas. These hard armour plates have proven effective against all handgun bullets and a range of rifles. Corrections officers and other law enforcement officers often wear vests designed specifically against bladed weapons and sharp objects. These vests may incorporate coated and laminated para-aramid textiles or metallic components.

Liquid body armour

One of the newest types of body armour is both flexible and lightweight—achieved by introducing liquid in the existing armour materials. Not entirely ready for combat, liquid body armour has the potential to be a good replacement for or supplement to bulkier vests. The two primary types of liquid body armour currently in development start with a foundation of DuPont Kevlar, commonly used in bulletproof vests. The term “liquid body armour” can be misleading, conjuring the idea of fluid sandwiched between two layers of solid material. However, liquid body armour do not con-

tain a visible liquid layer. Instead, these use Kevlar soaked in a shear-thickening fluid, which behaves like solid when subject to mechanical stress or shear. In other words, it moves like a liquid until an object strikes or agitates it forcefully. Then, it hardens in a few milliseconds. The fluid is made of silica particles suspended in polyethylene glycol. The silica particles are only a few nanometers in diameter, hence reports describe this fluid as a form of nanotechnology.

The Indian scenario

At present, the Indian Army uses bullet proof jacket (BPJ)—single plate and double plate. Single plate weighs 3 kg while double plate is 9 kg. The heavy weight of the BPJ due to the inserted steel plates is not appreciated by a soldier who has to additionally carry his weapon and ammunition, rendering the total weight quite unbearable, especially when operating in hilly and mountainous regions. In the future the concept will cater not merely for the protection of the soldier but his overall survivability on the battlefield which combines the characteristics of protection against conventional weapons with situational awareness. The Future Infantry Soldier as a System is being designed accordingly.

Industry leaders

Some of the vendors in this field in India and abroad are: Imperial Armour, South Africa; Global Armour SA (Pty) Limited, South Africa; LBA International Limited, UK; KATA Vitec I Limited, Israel; MKU Private Limited, India; Hellweg International Pty Limited, Australia; DSM Dyneema, The Netherlands; Oskar Pedersen AS, Norway; International Armour Corporation, USA; Peace Keeper Middle East Sharjah, UAE; Secure Mobile (India); and Anjani Technoplast Limited, India. SP

R.K. Gupta, Managing Director, Anjani Technoplast Ltd, India

SP’s Land Forces (SP’s): As one of the biggest manufacturers of body armour, have you seen an upsurge in demand?

R.K. Gupta (Gupta): Yes, post 9/11, there has been a major increase in both national and international demand. SP’s: Have such demands expedited India’s procurement procedures?

Gupta: Developments, like the Kargil and Mumbai attacks, have hastened the procurement process and supplying has actually become easier—we are seeing less of red tape-ism. SP’s: Who are your Indian clients?

Gupta: We make customised products for paramilitary forces and the state police. In the defence services, we supply to the army and the air force. We have also bid for a naval tender for bullet-proof jackets. SP’s: Body armour manufacturers get requisitions for supply from terrorist and insurgent groups as well. Have you?

Gupta: Never. We would never associate with anti-national elements.

SP’s: Who are your international clients?

Gupta: Most of the developed countries—Middle East, Europe and the US.

SP’s: What are your research facilities?

Gupta: We have a very big and efficient research, development and design centre. The DRDO has been in close association and advises us to customise to defence and security services needs. SP’s: What are your other products for the defence sector?

Gupta: We produce surveillance equipment, vehicle armour, riot control suits, helicopter armour and bullet-proof riot shields. SP’s: Do other countries have as tough government procedures in defence supply as India?

Gupta: Yes, absolutely. Also, the US supports its domestic players a lot, which makes our entry tough. In India, there is no preferential treatment to Indian companies in global tenders. —By Sangeeta Saxena

Spotlight on BMS

S e minar Repor t

Photograph: Sharad Saxena

The requirement is to draft a well-defined policy on the type of communication services and connectivity that could be made available to battalions/regiments LT GENERAL (RETD) V.K. KAPOOR

The 2nd International Seminar on BMS was held in New Delhi from April 14 to 15


urrent and future communication devices to assist tactical entities from the soldier to the commander attracted the spotlight at a recent international seminar held in the capital. Eight sessions spread evenly across two days witnessed extensive deliberations on the subject at the second International Seminar on Battle Management Systems (BMS) in New Delhi, on April 14 and 15. Organised by the Directorate General Information Systems (DGIS) and the Confederation of Indian Industry, the sessions included the inaugural and valedictory addressed by the Chief of the Army Staff, General Deepak Kapoor, and Vice Chief of Army Staff, Lieutenant General N. Thamburaj, respectively.


SP’S LAND FORCE S 3/ 2 0 09

Analysing weaknesses

Existing tactical communications network lacks the capability to support the Indian Army’s (IA) needs on the digitised battlefield. Present and future communication requirements will critically depend on a broader spectrum of information services: video, graphics, data, imagery, collaborative planning tools, remote interactive battlefield operating systems, and distributed data bases. Hence, the IA has embarked upon an aggressive digitisation programme, and is rapidly changing its doctrine and tactics, thereby outstripping and dangerously surpassing the capability of the current tactical communication systems. Fortunately, with the tremendous technological advances in

communications, automation and network management, a communications network responsive to the army’s new information needs is competitively implementable.

Areas of Interest

The seminar identified the following topics: • Promote awareness of current and future trends in tactical communication systems. • Identify technologies which support the communication requirement of BMS. • Identify communication services which keep all elements of battalion/regiment in the situational awareness loop. • Provide a dynamic network management system which can sustain the vagaries of grouping/regrouping in the tactical battle area. • Maintain integrity of BMS despite disparate levels of user security classification.

Setting the pace

Director General Information Systems

Lieutenant General P.C. Katoch emphasised that speed and pervasiveness of data transmission in the Information Age were causing a revolutionary change in the nature of military operations and warfare. The rapid diffusion of information, enabled by technological advances, challenged the relevance of traditional practices and principles of warfare. However, to derive maximum benefits that the Information Age had to offer, requirement of a reliable, robust and resilient communication architecture that assured the availability of bandwidth for passage of critical information in the required time frame and secured manner was mandatory. The legacy systems do not support this aspiration. Hence, the requirement is to draft a well-defined policy on the type of communication services and connectivity that could be made available to battalions/regiments. To facilitate this, it was imperative that stateof-the-art capabilities and technologies be capitalised upon. SP

A i r Defence

Photographs: Rheinmetall

Detect, Identify & Destroy

Skyshield Radar

The combination of radar and computers revolutionised the fire control systems for air defence LT GENERAL (RETD) NARESH CHAND


anually calculating an effective trajectory, for the firing of air defence (AD) guns or missiles to destroy a moving target, is an uphill task. The problem becomes more complex when the target is a fighter aircraft that can zoom past at supersonic speed in all the three dimensions simultaneously. Before the invention of radars, AD guns were fired by manually calculating the lead angles. Search lights were used for engagements at night. With the invention of radar, detection of aerial targets became easier but the problem of calculating the accurate trajectory still remained. This was partially overcome with mechanical predictors, where the radar indicated the current position and the predictor predicted the future position based on target speed and direction of movement. Next came the mechanical computers which did not automatically train the gun towards the target, but moved a dot on a disc which was then followed by the gun layers. The earlier mechanical computers were humongous in size, weighing as much as a three-tonne lorry. The story goes that when one such system was to be moved to Devlali (where the School of Artillery is located) from Mumbai, its tyres had to be deflated in order for it to pass through the tunnels on the Western Ghats without getting obstructed by the roof. The mechanical prediction system was known as ‘mechanical devices’ as it had a number of moving rods and cylinders; later, capacitors were also incorporated. Solving a mathematical problem mechanically was an act of sheer genius. Ballistic problems became easier and faster to solve with the development of analogue computers. The size of the computer also became smaller and smaller. Analogue computers were followed by digital computers which were even more accurate, faster and smaller. These were primarily weapon computers which were dedicated to a specific weapon system. Thus, the combination of radar and computers revolutionised the fire control systems for AD.

Fire-control radars

A fire control consists of a radar and a weapon computer. The radar is designed

specifically to provide information regarding the target with respect to target bearing, elevation, range and velocity to the weapon computer for computing the firing trajectory to the target. This trajectory is then passed on to the guns or missiles for firing. This process is continuous and automatic as long as the target is within range of the radar. Fire control radars have a very narrow intense beam (X band and below) to ensure accurate tracking of the target. One of the first modern fire control radars was Contraves’ Superfledermaus which had a pencil shaped beam in X band. It could perform the functions of surveillance by mechanically moving its beam to cover a larger area. After detection of the target, it started tracking it with the help of its analogue computer. This process caused some delay, and being a narrow beam, the surveillance had wide gaps in its coverage. It had a range of 40 km for detection and tracking started at 9.5 km when the computer started functioning. It had an optical laying system as a back up and could control two guns, but it was possible to control more guns or missiles with a tailor made computer. It could also be provided target detection from a surveillance radar. Autonomous Systems: With the flying profile of fighter aircraft dipping lower and lower to avoid radar detection, long range for surveillance became redundant as the pickup ranges came to about 20 to 25 km, depending upon the height of the antenna. This also resulted in lowering of reaction timings, thereby necessitating an autonomous surveillance and fire control radar located on a common platform with the target being passed electronically within the system. Skyguard was one such system developed to replace the Superfledermaus. It is has two radars, one each for search and track. It also uses a digital computer instead of the earlier analog system. The search radar is a fully coherent pulse doppler system. It utilises a common transmitter in tandem with the acquisition radar, works in I, J and K band and has a range between 17 km and 25 km. Skyshield is the latest version of Skyguard. Both these are developed by Oerlikon Contraves (now a subsidiary of Rheinmetall). Track-while-scan: Some modern radars

come equipped with a TWS capability that allow for simultaneously operation as a fire-control radar and a search radar. This works either by having the radar switch between sweeping the search sector and sending directed pulses at the target to be

tracked, or by using a phased-array antenna to generate two or more radar beams and dividing them between both the roles. In the TWS mode, the radar has a possibility to acquire additional targets, as well as providing an overall view of the airspace. Track-while-scan radars became possible with the introduction of two new technologies: phased-array radars and computer memory devices. The development of tunable high-power coherent radio frequency oscillators and digital computers enabled TWS radars. By effecting a slight phase shift between a series of antennas, the resulting signal could be steered and focused electronically, and superior memory of digital computers to retain the radar data from scan to scan, permitted the dual function of track and scan simultaneously. Defence

One of the first modern fire control radars was Contraves’ Superfledermaus which had a pencil shaped beam in X band Research and Development Organisation has also developed an effective phased array radar called Rajindra for Akash Missile System. All current fire control radars are normally autonomous or TWS. Autonomous systems can be mounted on tanks, vehicles or can be towed thus are more suitable for mobile weapon systems. They are also less costly. TWS are more suitable for medium and long range missile systems—and also more costly. SP


Latest & Best Flycatcher Mk 2 (HSA Signaal now taken over by Thales) Flycatcher Mk 2 is an autonomous, all-weather, hybrid weapon control centre that has an I-band radar and a K-band radar/Electro-Optical (E-O) tracking suite employed with short range and very short range AD Systems. It can be integrated with a variety of guns and missile systems. Its search radar is a 3-D sensor that covers up to 70° in elevation on every scan. It can be operated in AD and Command Centre (CC) modes, with the former being the radar’s basic operational mode. In the CC function Flycatcher Mk 2 acts as the co-ordination centre for a group of systems within a short range AD network. Accurate 3-D target tracking during an engagement is performed by either the system’s K-band radar or by its E-O subsystem. Raytheon’s AN/MPQ-53 and AN/MPQ-65 Radar Set The AN/MPQ-53/65 Radar is a passive electronically scanned array radar which is equipped with IFF, electronic counter-countermeasure and track-via-missile (TVM) guidance sub systems. The AN/MPQ-53 Radar Set supports PAC-2 and older units, and the AN/MPQ-65 Radar Set supports PAC-3 units. The main difference between these two radars is the addition of a second traveling wave tube which gives the AN/MPQ-65 Radar increased search, detection, and tracking capability. The radar’s antenna array consists of over 5,000 elements which “flash” the radar’s beam many times per second. Additionally, the radar’s antenna array contains an IFF interrogator subsystem and a TVM array. Patriot’s radar is somewhat unique in that it is a “detection-to-kill” system, implying that a single unit performs all functions of search, identification, track, and engagement. Normally, separate radars are required for performing each function. The beam created by the Patriot’s flat phased array radar is comparatively narrow and highly agile compared to a moving dish. This gives the radar an unmatched ability to detect small, fast targets like ballistic missiles or low radar cross section targets such as stealth aircraft or cruise missiles.



A r tiller y

Delays Plague Modernisation To generate both qualitative and quantitative firepower asymmetries, it is imperative that artillery modernisation is undertaken with alacrity

Photograph: Wikipedia


M777 Light Towed Howitzer


ince January 2008, the Ministry of Defence (MoD) has issued three global tenders to revive long-delayed plans to modernise the Indian artillery. Tenders were issued for 155mm guns and howitzers for the mountains, the plains and self-propelled guns for the deserts. Summer and winter trials were expected to be held over the next one year, and expectations ran high that contracts for acquisition and local production would be awarded as early as in the first half of 2010. As none of the bidders have yet been invited to participate in the mid-2009 summer trials, it appears that there will be further delays. As future conventional wars on the Indian sub-continent are likely to be fought under the nuclear shadow, deep manoeuvre battle will be extremely risky. This major restriction on military operations on land will lead to much greater emphasis on firepower. Hence, it is imperative that artillery modernisation is undertaken with alacrity so as to generate both qualitative and quantitative firepower asymmetries to achieve unassailable dominance on the future battlefield.

Search for 155mm 52 cal guns

The last major acquisition of towed gunhowitzers was in the mid-1980s when about 400 pieces of 39-calibre 155mm FH-77B howitzers with a range of 30 km were acquired from Bofors of Sweden. This gun proved its mettle in the Kargil conflict. After two decades of neglect, during which the 100mm and 122mm field guns of Russian origin and the indigenous 75/24 Indian Mountain Gun joined the long list of equipment bordering on obsolescence but still in service, tenders were floated and trials were held for a 52-calibre 155mm gun to replace all field and medium guns. Just when a contract for 120 tracked and 180 wheeled self-propelled (SP) 155mm guns was about to be concluded after years of protracted trials, South Africa’s Denel, a leading contender for the contract, was alleged to have been involved in a corruption scam in an earlier deal for anti-material rifles. The other two howitzers in contention, from Soltam of Israel and BAE (Bofors) of Sweden, did not meet the laid down criteria and Army HQ recommended fresh trials, setting the programme back by at least three to four years. Another bone of contention was that the howitzers were technology demonstration models and not guns in actual service with the home country armies.

Ideal for mountain operations: 155mm 45 cal howitzers

The artillery recently conceptualised a requirement for a light-weight towed howitzer of 155mm calibre for employment in the mountains. Neither the present Bofors howitzer nor its 52-calibre replacement will be


SP’S LAND FORCE S 3/ 2 0 09

capable of effective operations in the mountains. A light-weight 45-calibre 155mm howitzer weighing less than 5,000 kg, with a light but adequately powered prime mover, is ideal for the mountains. The gun-train should be capable of negotiating sharp road bends without the need to unhook the gun from the prime mover. The two British 45calibre 155mm howitzers that competed for the US contract for a similar howitzer some years ago—the Ultra-lightweight Field Howitzer and the Light-weight Towed Howitzer—or others that have now been developed could be considered for licensed production with transfer of technology. In January 2008, the MoD floated a Request for Proposal (RFP) for 140 pieces of ultra-light 39-calibre 155mm towed howitzers for use by the Indian Army’s (IA) mountain formations. Presumably, these will also be employed by the army’s rapid reaction divisions as these howitzers will be easy to transport by air. That many howitzers will adequately equip seven medium artillery regiments and cost approximately Rs 3,000 crore. The RFP has been reportedly issued to UK’s BAE Systems (which now owns Bofors), for the M777, claimed to be the lightest in the world at under 4,220 kg, and to Singapore Technologies for the Pegasus SLWH.

RFP for 155mm towed & SP guns The MoD has also floated a global tender for the purchase of 400 155mm towed artillery guns, to be followed by indigenous manufacture of another 1,100 howitzers, in a project worth a whopping Rs 8,000 crore. The RFP was issued to eight prospective bidders, including BAE, General Dynamics, Nexter (France), Rheinmetall (Germany) and Samsung (South Korea). An RFP has also been issued for 180 wheeled self-propelled guns for around Rs 4,700 crore for employment by mechanised forces in the plains and semi-desert sectors. Since the Bofors 155mm Howitzer was introduced into service, the indigenously designed and manufactured 105mm Indian Field Gun and its (not so) light version, the Light Field Gun, have also joined the list of guns and howitzers heading for obsolescence. Approximately 180 pieces of 130mm M46 Russian medium guns have been successfully “up-gunned” to 155mm calibre with ordnance supplied by Soltam of Israel. The new barrel length of 45-calibres has enhanced the range of the gun to about 40 km with extended range ammunition.

Smerch MBRLs

There has been notable progress on the rocket artillery front. A contract for the acquisition of two regiments of the 12tube, 300mm Smerch multi-barrel rocket launcher (MBRL) system with 90 km range was signed with Russia’s Rosoboronexport in early-2006. This weapon system is a major

boost for the long-range firepower capabilities of the army. If this weapon system had been available during the Kargil conflict, Pakistan’s brigade HQ and forward airfield at Skardu and other targets deep inside POK could have been hit with impunity. Extended range (ER) rockets are being introduced for the 122mm Grad MBRL to enhance the weapon system’s range from 22 to about 40 km. A contract worth Rs 5,000 crore has also been signed for the serial production of the Pinaka MBRL weapon system, another Defence Research and Development Organisation project plagued by time delays and completed with help from Larsen and Toubro and the Tatas. The Pinaka rockets will have an approximate range of 37 km.

are likely to cost Rs 13,000 crore. The major acquisitions will be of initial lots of 400 towed howitzers of 155mm calibre, with a barrel length of 52-calibres, costing about Rs 4,000 crore, 140 ultra-light weight 155mm towed howitzers, with a barrel length of 45-calibres, costing Rs 3,000 crore and 180 SP 155mm howitzers costing Rs 5,000 crore. The Shakti project for a command and control systems for the artillery, earlier called Artillery Combat Command and Control System, has reached the stage of maturity and is now being fielded extensively in the plains. Gradually, it will be fielded up to the corps level and the two artillery divisions will be equipped with it.

Counter Bombardment

Efforts are also underway to add ballistic as well as cruise missiles to the artillery arsenal. The BrahMos supersonic cruise missile (Mach 2.8 to 3.0), with a precision strike capability, very high kill energy and range of 290 km, is being inducted into the army. It is a versatile missile that can be launched from TATRA mobile launchers and silos on land, aircraft and ships and, perhaps in future, also from submarines. As many as 50 BrahMos missiles are expected to be produced every year. Efforts are afoot to further increase its strike range. BrahMos Aerospace has orders worth Rs 3,500 crore from the army and the navy, which has opted for the anti-ship as well as the land attack cruise missile versions. Critical to the IA’s performance in the next conventional war that India may have to fight, if there is any field of defence procurement in which the MoD must make haste, it is artillery. SP

Counter-bombardment (US term counterfire) capability is also being upgraded, but at a slow pace. At least about 40 to 50 weapon locating radars (WLRs) are required for effective counter-bombardment, especially in the plains, but only a dozen have been procured so far. In addition to the 12 AN-TPQ 37 Firefinder WLRs acquired from Raytheon, USA, under a 2002 contract worth $200 million, Bharat Electronics Limited is reported to be assembling 28 WLRs. These radars will be based on both indigenous and imported components. The radar is expected to match the capabilities of the Firefinder system and will have a detection range of about 40 km. The indigenous sound ranging system does not appear to be making worthwhile progress and may be shelved in favour of an imported system.

Costs involved

Modernisation plans of tube artillery alone


The writer is Director, Centre for Land Warfare Studies (CLAWS), New Delhi.

‘Fully committed to offset & ToT criteria’ Gerhard Hoy, Senior Vice President, Rheinmetall Defence, India SP’s Land Forces (SP’s): What are your bids in the artillery modernisation programme of the Indian Army?

Gerhard Hoy (GH): We had submitted our bid for the towed 156mm/52 cal artillery gun. But, unfortunately, the clearance for transfer of technology came from my country a little late and we were informed by the Government of India that we were not in the running because the documents had not been submitted on the deadline. In the RTG-52 tracked self-propelled artillery gun bid, we were the only bidders, and the Government of India has returned the proposal, saying the case is closed. The RWG-52 wheeled artillery gun bid is on and we have been called for the technical trials. So, let’s wait and watch. SP’s: Are you ready for the transfer of technology and the offset clause?

GH: Yes, we are fully committed to offset requirement and the transfer of technology. SP’s: How will your guns suit the Indian soldier and how effective will it be in the Indian conditions?

GH: We stress on human engineering needs and will give a product which will have the ability to lower the lifecycle cost. We’re totally committed to supplying the Indian government and its armed forces with cost-effective, leading edge technology. SP’s: Is there a plan for a joint venture with Indian companies?

GH: Yes, we are absolutely open to it and will see when we get the contract to produce the guns for the Indian defence forces. —By Sangeeta Saxena

C ommunication

Internet Protocol Security Illustration: Ratan Sonal

Security is complex evolutionary process and an important aspect of military communications LT COLONEL S. NATARAJAN

Limitations of IPsec

While IPSec VPNs could achieve secure, remote connectivity for end-to-end connectivity, they proved to be inadequate in a highly mobile and open environment, mainly due to the following limitations: • IPSec VPNs are resource intensive and takes time to install. • IPSec VPNs can pose difficulties on account of need to cross firewalls while using centralised resources. • IPSec VPNs are full programs of 0.1 to 8 Megabytes, thereby resulting in slower downloads and poor performance on devices such as PDAs. • IPsec VPNs have associated complexity of PKI needed to support them.

Secure Socket Layer VPN

To overcome these challenges, among other measures like IPver6, SSL VPN technology was introduced. SSL VPN signified a paradigm shift in the very perception of secure, remote access. Security in SSL VPN hinged on the premise that every user is ‘guilty’ till ‘proven innocent’. SSL VPNs essentially leverage the ubiquity of SSL encryption technology, which is built into almost every web or WAP browser. In comparison to IPSec, which works at the IP layer, SSL sits on top of a transport protocol, such as TCP.

Support for higher bandwidth. Low latency. No impact on Quality of Service. Protocol Independent.

Security in defence networks

Information conveyed through military communications systems must be rendered secure. Network security in the defence forces was predominantly at the lower layers of the OSI stack. This model is not adequate with the emergence of modern networks and its convergence. An ideal encryption model would include support for multiple media (satellite, OFC, radio, line an so on) and encryption at multiple layers (Application, IP and Physical Layer). The approach would be to eliminate vulnerability using encryption techniques that protects information across the network. A suggested model is as under: Multilayer Layer Security: Information security can be achieved through a multilayered model. • Physical Layer: The existing arrangement of using Bulk Encryption Units for securing the lower layer must continue. • IP layer and Application layer: This layer requires to be addressed with solutions like SSL, IP sec VPNs and so on after weighing their pros and cons and associated tradeoffs. A large number of open

standards security solutions are available, policy restrains on the use of same should be viewed holistically till the time we have an indigenous security solution. Towards this end, an overall robust PKI policy for the defence forces is also a must. Security Policy: Network security will always be an evolutionary process and never complete. Technology solutions will have to be strengthened by effective policies and standard operating procedures. Needless to say, security is a serious aspect and all persons should adhere to guidelines. Security is complex evolutionary process and an important aspect of military communications. With technology advancement there are a number of security features to obviate risks and threats. Military networks have their peculiarities and plain vanilla leveraging of technology will have its associated effects on bandwidth overheads. Therefore, a call based on operational parameters should be taken to achieve an effective model. SP The author is serving officer of the Corps of Signals of the Indian Army.

Disclaimer: Certified that views expressed and suggestions made in the articles are made by the author in his personal capacity and do not have any official endorsement.


Advantages of SSL VPN

• Cost effective and easy to use. • Allows organisations to create user identity-based access policies, offering granular network access to users. • SSL (which uses port 443) will work through firewalls without any special configuration • Eliminates all IP address management issues associated with IPSec VPNs. • Supports user authentication. • Supports more granular authorisation policies than IPSec. • Offers browser data protection.




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The technology that brings secure communications to the Internet Protocol is called IP Security (IPsec)—an open standard suite of protocols for securing IP communications by authentication and encryption of each IP packet of a data stream. IPsec is a dual mode, end to end security scheme operating at the Layer 3 in the Open Systems Interconnection (OSI) model. It uses an Internet Key Exchange (IKE) which is used to set up a Security Association (SA) by handling negotiating of protocols to perform various functions, an Authentication Header (AH) which provides guarantee connectionless integrity and data origin authentication for IP packets and an Encapsulation Security Payload (ESP) that protects origin authenticity, integrity and confidentiality of packets. Modes of Operation: IPsec operates in two modes—Transport and Tunnel. In Transport Mode, the payload of the IP packet is encrypted. The header is neither modified nor encrypted. Transport mode is used for host to host communications. In Tunnel mode, the entire IP packet (data and header) is encrypted. This is then encapsulated into a new IP packet with a new IP header. Tunnel mode is used to create Virtual Private Networks (VPN) for network to network communications. Key Management: The default automated key management protocol for IPSec is IKE. IKE provides a standardised method for dynamically authenticating IPSec peers, negotiating security services, and generating shared keys. An important element of IPSec key management is the use of Public Key Infrastructure (PKI). PKI is a trust infrastructure that manages online line identity in digital format. While PKI is an effective approach, it has its associated challenges in key selection and computational overheads. IPsec uses asymmetric encryption algorithms like RSA or DSA and symmetric

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ver the last three decades, the Internet has grown from a small, relatively captive network to an enormous public domain network. TCP/IP was developed for very small networks and was used by government researchers at the United States Defence Advanced Research Agency. All workflows at that time where between few machines and among known people from the same organisation. Gradually, new sites were added and eventually the Internet was opened to the public. After initial proliferation, information technology (IT) was seen as opportunity by the commercial sector to improve business models. This eventually led to an exponential growth of the Internet, exposing a host of security threats. Accordingly, the need for security in the public domain arose. Like all modern armies, the Indian Army has a large number of projects in the pipe line to support network centricity. The army has diverse networks spanning from legacy combat net radios to high end strategic networks. While these networks are captive, they are not insulated from threats. In fact, security assumes greater importance in view of the operational sensitive data conveyed.

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Te chnolog y

Net-Centricity Lends the Edge Powerful information processing and communication systems have resulted in dramatic improvements in the quality and quantity of information available to the defence forces LT GENERAL (RETD) VIJAY OBEROI

Harnessing information

While the relationship between information and combat is well known, the challenge has always been as to how it can be maximised. Physical and Mental Domains: All military operations are conducted in three domains. Two of these, the physical and the mental, are well known and understood. The physical domain is where attack, defence and manoeuvre occur. Elements of this domain are easy to measure, namely,

Network-centric operations impact at all levels of war: strategic, operational art and tactical lethality and survivability. The domain of the mind is where battles are won and lost. This is the domain of the intangibles: leadership, morale, unit cohesion, level of training and experience, public opinion and so on. Key attributes of these intangibles have remained relatively constant. The Information Domain: The third domain is that of information. It is this domain which is now increasing combat power exponentially. It is network-centric forces which help us to share a common operational picture, resulting in a very high level of shared situational awareness. Protagonists of network-centric warfare assert that there is a strong correlation between information sharing, improved situ-


SP’S LAND FORCE S 3/ 2 0 09

ational awareness and significantly increased combat power. It is also true that networkcentric operations impact at all levels of war: strategic, operational art and tactical.

Hierarchy versus networking

Hierarchy is not yet dead, but in a network environment it will be under pressure to change. The Indian defence forces, especially the army, currently conform to an organisational philosophy of vertically integrated command and control. This organisational system reduces uncertainty by providing a framework that specifies how individuals, sub-units and units should behave, as well as their relationship to others. In a hierarchy, people reduce their uncertainty about why to act and what to do by reducing all the available information to only that

to being dynamic and multidirectional. Data acquisition, transmission, processing and display will have to be quick, without interruption between the different media employed. Significantly, collaborative decision-making via networks may cause information overload, command gridlocks and even a degree of chaos in operations. In some respects, networked technologies may amplify uncertainty. Networks are complex systems that, unlike hierarchies, thrive on connectivity, flattened command structures and ‘peer-to-peer’ nodes of communications. In cases where there is a long chain of command dependency, small failures can slow down decisions. As network complexity increases, solutions to problems in one node are likely to require parallel adjustments to behaviour in other nodes.

Illustration: Ratan Sonal


ince World War I, the primary emphasis in military modernisation has been on “platforms”—better aircraft, better ships, better tanks and so on. Today, platforms are considered less important than networks in an electronic web that links all the weapons, so that the sum is greater than the parts. The main components of the Revolution in Military Affairs are: command, control, computers and communications, intelligence, surveillance and targeting (C4IST); and the development of doctrine, strategies, tactics and military organisations that can take advantage of this technological potential. C4IST is the heart of network-centric warfare. Net-centric warfare must always be viewed in the joint context amongst the three services, as well as many other agencies and departments of the government. Fielding a stand-alone net-centric system would be of little value, as the dividends will be marginal. Although we had started on the wrong foot in developing the necessary hardware and software independently, it is believed that the three services now have a fair degree of co-ordination between them. The defence forces of India understood the need to harness the power of the electro-magnetic spectrum over two decades back and set up a number of task forces to research, evolve, test and field a number of systems. Considerable work has been done to develop various battlefield systems during these years. However, for a number of reasons only a few stand-alone systems have been fielded.

which they need in order to perform a task at their level and in their specialisation. Transition to a network-centric force requires an organisational system that increases the productive capacity of the subordinates by maximising individual and variable human intellectual effort.

Capabilities of net-centric forces A network-centric force has the capability to share and exchange information among geographically dispersed elements—sensors, shooters, decision makers or supporting organisations—to achieve a more coordinated approach to decision making in combat. This results in a common operational picture and a common tactical picture. Network-centric forces synchronise their efforts from the bottom-up, to achieve dramatically increased combat power. The ability to increase combat power at the tactical level provides operational commanders with increased flexibility to employ their forces, to generate desired effects. Networkcentric warfare thus provides commanders with an improved capability for dictating the sequence of battle and the nature of engagements, controlling force ratios and rapidly foreclosing enemy’s courses of action.

Limitations of net-centric forces On account of the impact of technology, operations are shifting from being linear

Focus on joint service

All the three services have been developing a range of networking capabilities but usually with an environmental rather than a holistic or joint focus. Single services tend to design their future operations around existing forces, with an overlay of network improvements, based on today’s knowledge. It needs to be remembered that future networks may create an operational environment that cannot be anticipated or predetermined. The professional military inclination is to seek to control change and try to plan, to the last detail, while evolving a networked force. Yet, we need to be prepared for unpredictable features. Consequently, while evolving the networking plan, we should seek general direction, but we must possess the imagination to exploit unforeseen opportunities. Network centric operations must be joint endeavours to the maximum extent. Most operations, whether in the conventional or the sub-conventional arenas, must be joint or in our context at least bi-service. Therefore, not fielding net-centric capability in a joint manner amounts to diluting our capability.

Organisational changes

There are four main ingredients of institutional change: technology, ideas, people and organisation. Networked technologies open access to what is always rare in warfare—

information. A fascination with technology alone is counter-productive, as it might lead to a narrow approach towards change. It is necessary to weigh how much decisionmaking should be devolved to machines. Networking doctrine emphasises the need for a process of constant innovation and identifies two key capabilities. These are, firstly, an ability to produce new ideas, and secondly, organisational effectiveness in turning these ideas into practice. If technology is to be implemented successfully, then even personnel policies would require significant changes. Indeed, effects in the areas of hierarchy, leadership and combat organisation could be far reaching.

Attitudinal changes

All new technologies represent a challenge to an existing social order and imply gain for some constituencies and loss for others. There is also an intra-organisational competition for resources and status. Since the results of networked technologies are likely to have major impact on the sociology of military organisations, the greatest challenges that the armed forces will face are likely to be cultural, in the form of introducing changes in thinking and behaviour. Existing attitudes and beliefs about how warfare is conducted today may well be the biggest impediment in achieving networkcentric capabilities. Increase in information sharing has the potential to create dramatic improvements in single service and joint war fighting capabilities. Exploiting this potential will require capabilities in exploring new tactics, techniques and procedures. Increase in networking is achieved by investing in networks, and by education and training of soldiers who operate the network in operations. Training joint and combined forces that have compatible networking capabilities is important to the development of new tactics, techniques and procedures.

In conclusion

Network-centric warfare is becoming the dominant logic of current and future military operations. These technologies bring with them a dramatic increase in the quantity of information, the need for constant interaction and a demand for greater organisational transparency. Powerful information processing and communication systems have resulted in dramatic improvements in the quality and quantity of information available to the defence forces. New technologies have enabled militaries to make optimum use of the electro-magnetic spectrum. This is a continuous process, constantly getting upgraded by new technologies. Net-centric capability requires a multidisciplinary and holistic approach, which includes the development of matching doctrine and infrastructure, restructuring and even re-engineering of some organisations. It also requires qualitatively higher knowledge and skill thresholds. The armed forces, the entire national security establishment, Defence Research and Development Organisation, PSUs and information technology companies have to work in unison and leverage their capabilities, so that a truly Indian system emerges. SP The author is a former Vice Chief of Army Staff and former Founder Director of Centre for Land Warfare Studies.

Publisher and Editor-in-Chief Jayant Baranwal

News i n B r i e f

■ India launches Risat-2 surveillance satellite

On April 20, India carried out the accelerated launch of its Risat-2, a military surveillance satellite built with help from Israel and carrying an Israeli syntheticaperture radar. The dedicated military satellite will watch for possible terrorist infiltrations, including from the sea, a Defence Ministry official said. India preponed the launch date in the wake of the November attacks on Mumbai by terrorists who arrived by sea, the official said. An upgraded version of the Risat-1 weather satellite, Risat-2 is dedicated to military use. The Risat-2 was launched via an Indian Polar satellite launch vehicle from Sriharikota. It weighs 300 kg, similar to the Israeli spy satellite Techstar, which was launched by an Indian spacecraft in late 2007.

■ Exercise Hind Shakti concluded The Indian Army recently concluded a major training exercise named Hind Shakti. The 72-hour long exercise conducted in the Punjab plains from May 3 focused on practicing its premier corps, the KHARGA Corps, in conduct of offensive tasks. The exercise entailed participation by Mechanised and Re-organised Plains Infantry Division in a blitzkrieg type armoured incursion, emphasising rapid penetration into enemy territory. It included effective offensive support by air power and attack helicopters. Units of KHARGA Corps were also tested for their ability to undertake and sustain operational manoeuvres against intensive electronic and information warfare.

India tests ability to launch nuclear warhead

■ Elbit Systems’ MFC Systems Integration for US Army

Elbit Systems Limited recently announced that its wholly owned US subsidiary, Elbit Systems of America, was awarded a contract from the US Army for the Mortar Fire Control (MFC) Systems Integration programme. Under the contract, Elbit Systems of America will perform systems integration, development, production, fielding and support of the US Army’s Mortar Ballistic Computer and MFC Systems. Work on this programme will be performed in Fort Worth, Texas.

■ Rheinmetall’s force protection technology for Bundeswehr

Assistant Editor Arundhati Das Senior Technical Group Editor Lt General (Retd) Naresh Chand Contributing Editor Air Marshal (Retd) V.K. Bhatia Chief Special Correspondent Sangeeta Saxena Sub-Editor Bipasha Roy

Sharad Saxena

On May 14, Army Chief General Deepak Kapoor, accompanied by his wife and President of Family Welfare Organisation, Kirti Kapoor, visited the Army Training Command (ARTRAC) in Shimla to review doctrinal and training issues. GOC-in-C ARTRAC Lieutenant General B.S. Jaswal received the Chief, who complimented the institute for providing impetus to achieve his vision for a modern army, besides being a premier think tank for evolving military doctrines.

The Indian Army tested a Prithvi-II ballistic missile with a range of 350 km from a mobile launcher on April 15 from the missile test site at Chandipur in Orissa. Sources in the Indian Defence Ministry said the launch tested the missile’s ability to carry a heavier payload, enabling it to be armed with a nuclear warhead. This test was conducted with only a conventional warhead. The Prithvi I and II missiles have already been inducted in the Indian Army, but the missile had not been tested with a 1,000-kg payload. The Prithvi series of missiles are regarded as weapons aimed at Pakistan, while the Agni-II missile, with a range of more than 2,000 km, was built for possible use against China. Liquid and solid variants of Prithvi missile have been tested.

SP’s Editor-in-Chief Jayant Baranwal presents a copy of SP’s Military Yearbook 2008-2009 to Chief of the Army Staff General Deepak Kapoor

nonlethal rounds, and function as a standalone shotgun or be attached to an M4 rifle. The contractor for the M26 is Vertu, a company based in Manassas, Virginia.

■ Study claims China, India, UAE top arms importers

The UAE has become the third-biggest arms importer worldwide, a leading defence think tank recently declared. The figures from the UAE reflected what the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) described as a “worrying” regional trend of increased arms imports into the Middle East. The oil-rich country accounted for 6 per cent of the world’s arms imports between 2004 and 2008, according to the report from SIPRI—the same proportion as South Korea. Only China with 11 per cent and India with 7 per cent had a larger share of the market, said the report.

■ India, Bangladesh promote defence relationship Rheinmetall

PRO Army

Army Chief visits Army Training Command in Shimla

Editor Lt General (Retd) V.K. Kapoor

German troops serving in Afghanistan will soon be equipped with a highly effective new form of protection against rocket, artillery and mortar attacks. The German government has contracted with the Düsseldorf-based Rheinmetall Group to supply the Bundeswehr with newly developed air defence systems. Dubbed the Nächstbereichs-Schutzsystem, or “very short-range protection system”, the stateof-the-art NBS is a major milestone in the Bundeswehr’s SysFla programme. The NBS C-RAM is specifically designed to defeat the danger posed by rocket, artillery and mortar attacks on the Bundeswehr.

■ US Army tests new small arms The US Army Soldier Weapons programme is revving up preparations and testing of the M26 modular shotgun system and the XM25 25mm airburst rifle, service officials said. The M26 shotgun, planned for infantry squads, Special Forces and military police, is slated to begin production and delivery in three to four months. The army has been testing the weapon at Aberdeen Proving Ground, Md. “M26 is a short-distance area weapon. In one cartridge, you have small steel balls which can hit targets. You can use it for room clearing. A single slug will go 50 m,” said Col. Douglas Tamilio, programme manager for soldier weapons. It is lighter than the current weapons. It can be attached to the M4, or it can be detached and it is only 3 to 12 pounds. Magazine-fed, it can fire lethal and

India-Bangladesh defence ties are on the upswing under the Sheikh Hasina government in Dhaka. A high-level Bangladesh Air Force delegation led by the country’s air chief, Air Marshal S.M. Zia-ur-Rehman, is in Delhi to discuss defence ties between the neighbouring countries, a senior Indian Defence Ministry official said. India is ready to export to Bangladesh defence equipment, including the Advanced Light Helicopter, and to assist the country in building warships, the ministry official said. Delhi is concerned about the increasing levels of defence supplies being sent from China to Bangladesh, Defence Ministry sources added. There are reports the Chinese Navy has access to Bangladesh’s Chittagong port. The Bangladesh air chief will hold talks with Indian Defence Minister A.K. Antony, Indian Navy Chief Admiral Sureesh Mehta and Army Chief General Deepak Kapoor.

■ US Army’s Future Combat System under revision

Barely days after US Defense Secretary Robert Gates killed the army’s Future Combat Systems’ (FCS) Manned Ground Vehicles (MGVs) programme, service leaders said they would draw up a new modernisation plan within weeks. The Non-Line-of-Sight Cannon was to be the first of eight MGVs. “The MGV is going back to the drawing board. In the next week to four weeks, we will go through a series of deliberations and analysis to see what the MGV programme will grow into,” an army official said.

Contributors India General (Retd) V.P. Malik, Lt General (Retd) Vijay Oberoi, Lt General (Retd) R.S. Nagra, Lt General (Retd) S.R.R. Aiyengar, Air Marshal (Retd) Vinod Patney, Major General (Retd) Ashok Mehta, Major General (Retd) G.K. Nischol, Brigadier (Retd) Gurmeet Kanwal, Brigadier (Retd) S. Mishra, Rohit Sharma Europe Andrew Brookes (UK) USA & Canada Lon Nordeen (USA) Anil R. Pustam (West Indies) South Africa Helmoed R. Heitman Chairman & Managing Director Jayant Baranwal Admin & Coordination Bharti Sharma Design Associate Art Director: Ratan Sonal Layout Designs: Rajkumar Sharma, Vimlesh Kumar Yadav Sales & Marketing Director Sales & Marketing: Neetu Dhulia Head Vertical Sales: Rajeev Chugh Sales Manager: Rajiv Ranjan Published bimonthly by Jayant Baranwal on behalf of SP Guide Publications Pvt Ltd. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means, photocopying, recording, electronic, or otherwise without the prior written permission of the publishers. Printed in India by Kala Jyothi Process Pvt Ltd © SP Guide Publications, 2009 Annual Subscription Inland: Rs. 600 • Overseas: US$180 Email: Letter to Editor For Advertising Details, Contact: SP GUIDE PUBLICATIONS PVT LTD POSTAL ADDRESS Post Box No 2525, New Delhi 110 005, India Corporate Office A 133 Arjun Nagar, Opp Defence Colony, New Delhi 110 003, India Tel: +91(11) 24644693, 24644763, 24620130 Fax: +91 (11) 24647093 Regd Office Fax: +91 (11) 23622942 Email: Representative Offices BANGALORE, INDIA Air Marshal (Retd) B.K. Pandey 534, Jal Vayu Vihar, Kammanhalli Main Rd, Bangalore 560043, India. Tel: +91 (80) 23682534 MOSCOW, RUSSIA LAGUK Co., Ltd Yuri Laskin Krasnokholmskaya, Nab., 11/15, app. 132, Moscow 115172, Russia. Tel: +7 (495) 911 2762, Fax: +7 (495) 912 1260 RNI Number: DELENG/2008/25818



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SP's Land Forces Jun-Jul 2009 - SP's Land Forces was launched realizing the need of a dedicated journal to address the issues pertaining to A...