IIT Madras to develop India's first smart bullets

IIT Madras has joined hands with Munitions India (MIL), a defense public sector enterprise, to develop India’s first indigenous 155mm guided smart ammunition. This collaboration aims to enhance the accuracy and range of the existing shells used in artillery guns, a TOI report stated.

According to a statement, the objective is to achieve a circular error probable (CEP) of 10m for the 155mm shell, which refers to the radius of a circle centered at the aimpoint. Currently, the ammunition produced in the country has a CEP of 500m. Additionally, the project aims to increase the impact and lethality when the ammunition hits the target.

The smart ammunition will be designed for use on 39 and 45-caliber 155mm artillery guns without any modifications to the gun system. It will be a fin-stabilized, canard-controlled, and guided shell with a maximum range of 38km and a minimum range of 8km. Other features include a three-mode fuse operation, point detonation, height of burst, delayed detonation, and an Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System (IRNSS)-guided GPS backup.

Prof G Rajesh, from the department of aerospace engineering, will lead a research team in developing the smart ammunition. He stated that the shell will incorporate various components such as guidance, navigation, and control systems, roll isolation strategies, canard actuation systems, fuze, shell body, and warhead. The smart projectile will utilize advanced technologies such as miniaturized electronics, sensors, and mechanical structures. The proposed smart projectile will rely on the IRNSS for guidance, ensuring independence from foreign satellite systems.

Munitions India, a state-owned defense company, specializes in the production, testing, research, development, and marketing of a wide range of ammunition and explosives for the army, navy, air force, and paramilitary forces.

Ravi Kant, chairman and managing director of Munitions India Limited, expressed confidence in the collaboration, stating that the combination of MIL’s expertise in conventional ammunition manufacturing and IIT-M’s prowess in developing a guidance system will lead to the production of modern ammunition with cutting-edge technologies.

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William Murphy

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