India Army to procure 100 loiter munition systems, tender by September

Photo: Harop loiter munition from Israel’s IAI. Indian armed forces already use these.

By N. C. Bipindra

New Delhi: The Indian Army has initiated the procurement process for 100 loiter munition systems and has set September this year as the target for issuing a tender. The required quantity is to be delivered within 18 months of a contract.

According to a Request for Information (RFI) issued by the Indian Army’s Infantry Directorate on Mar. 6, the loiter munitions are being sought for use by infantry men to execute “pinpoint strikes with legal munition” after performing “surveillance tasks by day and night” using a man-portable platform.

Photo: American giant Lockheed Martin’s Fire Shadow loiter munition.

According to the requirements posted by the army in the RFI, the loiter munition should operate at a range not less than 15 km and the system should have the capability to loiter above the target, detect targets, enable real time decision making and carry out destruction of the target.

“The system should be light weight, man portable and easy for a soldier to carry and operate. The loiter munition system should be able to operate at a flight endurance of at least 30 minutes and a range of not less than 15 km (Line of Sight).”

The other requirements are:

  • It should be controlled by a ground controller with a data link established with the loiter munition system.
  • It should have warhead to destroy personnel and soft skinned targets.
  • It should be able to detect targets by day and night (thermal capable).
  • The system should function in all weather conditions.
  • The loiter munition system should be capable of providing the desired performance across all spectrums of employment in the Indian terrain and climatic conditions.
  • The total weight of the loiter munition system should not more than 20 kg and should be operable with one/two person(s)

The vendor is to provide one loiter munition with complete set of sensor package mounted on the loiter munition system (with day and night capability) along with one ground control station to include ruggedized handheld display, communication system, antenna and tripod.

The ground control station should be able to control multiple loiter munitions. The loiter munition system should be able to operate up to an altitude of 4,500 meter (Above Mean Sea Level) and not less than 300 meter (Above Ground Level).

The loiter munition system should have anti -jamming and anti-spoofing properties.

The ground control station should have the following types of map:

  • Raster
  • Digital terrain elevation data
  • GIS ready maps in SHAPE file format
  • GIS geo references should be displayed in latitude-longitude or Indian Military Grid Reference (IMGR)
  • Electro Magnetic Interference(EMI) or Electro Magnetic Compatibility (EMC) Compliance
  • The loiter munition system should fulfill relevant EMI/EMC requirements as per Military Standards 461E.
  • The loiter munition system should be able to be packed and carried by not more than two personnel including the sub-system such as GCS and data link
  • It should be able to be air dropped placed on a platform system and flexible enough to slither down man packed from helicopters.

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