New Delhi: The Indian Army has sought vendor responses to buy 804 night sights with thermal imaging capability for 30mm automatic anti-personnel grenade launchers, to enhance their utilisation during operations.
The AGS-30 — as the grenade launcher is called in the Infantry Directorate — engagements at present are carried out with the help of daylight sight unit PAG-17. There is no night sight held for AGS-30.
“Therefore, due to the restricted inventory, a number of limitations exist in the employability of AGS-30. The firer has to be well-versed with the computation chart related to the range and corresponding elevation for effective utilisation of PAG-17,” the Expression of Interest (EOI) document issued on July 7 said. The responses to the EOI would have to be submitted before Aug. 7.
“More so, under obscure and poor visibility conditions, the PAG-17 cannot be utilised to engage targets. The range estimation requires separate equipment. At night, the effective engagement of the target can be undertaken only when related data has been recorded under daylight condition,” it said.
“Impromptu target engagement is difficult and has severe limitations at night. The launcher has to be mounted at exactly same location at night from where data was recorded during daytime. Else, the AGS will be misaligned.”
All these issues substantially constrain the effective utilisation of this versatile weapon system and resultantly, limit operational effectiveness of the sub-unit.
“To overcome above mentioned limitations, the Indian Army is progressing the scheme for procurement of Night Sight (Thermal Imaging) for AGS-30 under the ‘Make-II‘ Category of the Defence Procurement Procedure of 2016 incorporating all amendments up to Nov. 1, 2019.”
From the technology scan of Indian defence industry, the army has ascertained that similar systems have been delivered by firms for larger platforms like aircraft and battle tanks. “Therefore, the biggest challenges envisaged for the project are miniaturisation of the sub-systems and their integration to the AGS-30.”
According to the EOI document, the objective is to seek the willingness of Indian vendors to participate in the ‘Make-II’ project under the amended Chapter IIIA of the DPP-2016, development of prototype and further procurement of the Night Sight with Thermal Imaging for AGS-30.
“Indian vendors meeting the Technical, Commercial, and Project requirements laid out in the EOI will be, as the next step, issued a ‘Project Sanction Order‘ to develop a prototype on ‘No Cost – No Commitment‘ (NCNC) basis. All trials of the project will be on NCNC basis,” the EOI document said.
The commercial Request for Proposal (RFP) for ‘Buy (Indian-IDDM)‘ would be issued to Development Agencies prior to commencement of Field Evaluation Trials (FET) to solicit their commercial offers and additional technical information and documentation, as may be necessary.