India to develop new aerospace products for security needs

February 7th, 2011 - 4:59 pm ICT by IANS  

Akash missile Bangalore, Feb 7 (IANS) India is set to develop new aerospace technologies and products to meet its growing security needs, Defence Minister A.K. Antony said Monday. “We have chalked out an ambitious roadmap to develop many challenging aerospace programmes to meet the needs of our armed forces,” Antony said, inaugurating a three-day international seminar on aerospace technologies here.

Exhorting the state-run defence units to improve quality and pace of interactions with the armed forces, Antony said the need of the hour was to enhance the percentage of indigenous systems for meeting their requirements and security concerns.

Among the aerospace programmes to be developed are the advanced medium combat aircraft (MCA), aerostat, unmanned combat aircraft (UCA), airborne early warning and control system (AEW&CS), medium altitude long-range unmanned aircraft Rustom and gas turbine engine Kaveri.

“Though the roadmap provides immense opportunities for the defence research and development establishments and the private industry, greater indigenisation and self-reliance are essential as no country, however friendly, will part with its critical technologies for strategic reasons,” Antony told about 800 delegations.

Lauding the defence and aerospace industry for its contribution to the successful development of the indigenous Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) Tejas, Akash missile system, Nishant unmanned aircraft, pilotless target aircraft Lakshya and airborne early warning systems (AEWS), the minister said cooperation at local, national and global levels was imperative to keep pace with the developments in the field globally.

“Though Tejas has often been criticised for long delays, we have tried to make a world class aircraft. The world over, while technology development precedes product development, we attempted both at the same time in the case of LCA as we were denied technologies and had to find solutions the hard way,” Antony said.

The eighth edition of the three-day international seminar on “Aero & Space Technologies - Success Through Global Cooperation” is being held in connection with the biennial AeroIndia 2011 trade exposition from Feb 9 in this aerospace hub.

Minister of State for Defence Production M.M. Pallam Raju, Indian Air Force chief Air Chief Marshal P.V. Naik, Scientific Advisor to Defence Minister V.K. Saraswat and state-run Defence Research and Development Organisation’s Chief Controller for R&D Projects Prahlada also spoke on the occasion.

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