'Electro Optical Systems and Payloads are Already Being Manufactured at Defsys Under the ‘Make in India’ Initiative of the Government'
Defsys, executive director, Dmitry Bernadiner
Dmitry BernadinerHow do you support government’s ‘Make in India’?
CONTROP Precision Technologies Ltd, Israel (CONTROP) and Defsys Solution Private Ltd (Defsys), based in Gurugram had entered into a strategic partnership for manufacturing of Electro Optical (E/O) Systems and Payloads in India. In fact, many of these products are already being manufactured at Defsys under the ‘Make in India’ initiative of the government of India. Defsys is one of the very few Indian companies to have the capability to immediately achieve the requisite indigenous content for ‘Buy Indian’ projects in E/O products, as mandated under the DPP-2016. It is important to mention that Defsys is also a manufacturer of number of mission critical airborne systems for the fighter aircrafts of Indian Air Force (IAF).

How do you think the Mini- UAV programme will progress?
Mini UAVs are one of the very critical requirements of the Infantry. It is an essential and important tool in the modern battlefield. We, in Defsys, are very hopeful that the programme should succeed, especially considering that there is now a real capability to make the ‘birds’ in India. Mini UAV itself should be considered as an enabler of efficient conduct of real time remote reconnaissance. It is, therefore, imperative that equal, if not more, importance must be given to the qualitative requirements of an Electro-Optical payload of the mini UAV. We are sure that the user will not allow any compromise on his real and necessary battlefield operational requirements.

What are the most essential characteristics that are required in a Mini UAV?
Mini UAVs are primarily small airborne vehicles, which should afford ease of transportation, assembling, launching, operations, recovery and disassembling by one or two persons and in the instant case, for the purpose of remote reconnaissance in all weather conditions both during day, night and low light level conditions. It should be capable of being launched with minimal or no site preparation. It should have enough endurance to cover the area of interest of a battalion commander flying at a suitable altitude to be safe and at the same time transmit images/video of a good quality. It should be able to carry out general surveillance and also investigate a target in detail by zooming out when required. It should be able to perform effectively in all weather conditions including low light conditions which may occur due to natural causes or as a result of battlefield activity without having to recall the UAV for change of payload.

You have indicated that the quality of a payload is one of the most important part of a Mini UAV and its selection could make or mar this project. What in your view are the most important and inescapable technical capabilities of payloads on such UAVs?
Without a suitable payload, a UAV is only an aero-model. For a mini UAV to function effectively and perform its task, it is imperative that the requirements of the payload are bolded, adequately detailed to an appropriate level, and not generalised. It needs recognition that these requirements of the UAV and of the payload are very closely inter-related and any change in one has an effect on the other. A small sized payload having low weight and power consumption and a high image resolution are aspects which one would normally need. Other issues which are very important (but frequently missed) are: one, it must be a multi-sensor payload to enable functioning in all light conditions; two, it must be a gyro stabilised systems and not only an ‘electronic stabilisation’ which is in fact not more than just a digital image correction ; three, it must have a continuous zoom facility to be able to focus on target without losing it , thereby enabling both, area surveillance and investigation; four, it should have a high sensitivity to manage even low thermal contrast of the target scene; five, it should be repairable indigenously to ensure low life cycle costs and lesser down time. And there are other issues like having a higher frame rate, ruggedisation level and should have standard interfaces like PAL or NTSC.


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