Ministry Of Defence, BEL sign contract worth over US$137mn to procure modern radio system

The Ministry of Defence (MoD) and Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL) signed a contract for procurement of Software Defined Radio Tactical (SDR-Tac) worth over US$137.3 million in New Delhi on February 8, 2021.

February 8, 2021

The SDR-Tac, jointly designed and developed by the DRDO through a consortium of domestic agencies and industry, will bring strategic depth to the Armed Forces.

Exhaustive user evaluation trials were completed successfully during May to June 2018 at Visakhapatnam for all waveforms under different network configurations.

In January 2021, the Indian Air Force awarded Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) a contract for the manufacture of 83 ‘Tejas’ light combat aircrafts.

The Indian Government has committed to building a US$26 billion defence industry by 2025, with the sector being given prominent focus under the “Make in India” initiative.

On February 8, 2021, the Ministry of Defence (MoD) and Defence Public Sector Undertaking (DPSU) Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL) signed a contract for procurement of Software Defined Radio Tactical (SDR-Tac) worth over US$137.3 million in New Delhi. 

The SDR-Tac, jointly designed and developed by Defence Electronics Applications Laboratory (DEAL) of Defence Research & Development Organisation (DRDO) through a consortium of domestic agencies and industry, comprising Weapons and Electronics Systems Engineering Establishment, BEL, Centre for Artificial Intelligence & Robotics (CAIR), and the Indian Navy, will bring strategic depth to the Armed Forces. The delivery is expected to take place within the next three years. User evaluation trials covering exhaustive harbour phase and sea phase trials were completed successfully during May to June 2018 at Visakhapatnam for all waveforms under different network configurations. All the aspects were evaluated successfully by all user agencies of the Navy, and clearance was accorded for procurement. 

The Armed Forces are in need of transition from the single purpose radio of the past to more flexible Software Defined Radios (SDRs) to serve most of their wireless communication needs. These SDRs will be backward compatible with existing Indian radios. They also allow implementation of futuristic waveforms on the same hardware using software programmability, thus ensuring longer life and savings on cost. 

In January 2021, the Indian Air Force awarded Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) a contract for the manufacture of 83 ‘Tejas’ light combat aircrafts. This will catalyse India’s aerospace sector, enabling the vision for an ‘Atmanirbhar Bharat’.

The Indian Government has committed to building a US$26 billion defence industry by 2025, with the sector being identified as one of the most prominent focuses under the ‘Make in India’ initiative. The defence industry has been envisioned as a driving force to set up a US$5-trillion economy by 2024-25. Herein, the Government has enforced several initiatives to develop defence R&D and manufacturing skills to not just reduce import bills, but also considerably raise export income. The nation’s technological prowess and high-margin, high-quality manufacturing set-up have helped in building that capability.