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Centre picks 7 homegrown startups to build next-gen tech for aerospace, defence sectors


New Delhi, July 11
The government on Thursday awarded seven new projects to startups under the Technology Development Fund scheme for various requirements of the Armed Forces and aerospace and defence sectors.

The move is aimed at nurturing micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) and startups in the defence and aerospace sectors, said the Defence Research & Development Organisation (DRDO).

"The indigenous development of these technologies will strengthen the military-industrial ecosystem," it added.

One such project aims to develop an indigenous toolkit for simulator training of pilots in realistic scenarios to help in full mission planning and large-force engagement. This project has been awarded to Noida-based startup Oxygen 2 Innovation.

Another project is for an underwater Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV). It relates to versatile marine battlefield accessories which can be deployed in multiple combat roles.

"The objective is Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) and Maritime Domain Awareness (MDA). The project has been awarded to Sagar Defence Engineering Pvt Ltd, Pune," said the DRDO, which comes under the Ministry of Defence.

Under the project titled 'Long-range Remotely Operated Vehicles for Detection & Neutralisation', the task is to build dual-use systems that will enable the detection, classification, localisation and neutralisation of underwater objects while keeping the key assets away from the suspected operational area.

This project has been awarded to IROV Technologies Pvt Ltd in Kochi.

Another project, 'Ice Detection Sensor for Aircraft', aims to develop detecting icing condition inflight, caused by super-cooled water droplets that freeze after their impact against the aircraft's external surfaces and are utilised by the aircraft for turning on the aircraft Anti-icing mechanism.

"It has been awarded to Craftlogic Labs Pvt Ltd, Bengaluru," the DRDO informed.

The 'Radar Signal Processor with Active Antenna Array Simulator' will enable the deployment of multiple target systems for test and evaluation of multiple short-range aerial weapon systems.

"It serves as the basic building block for larger radar systems. The project has been sanctioned to Data Pattern (India) Limited, Chennai," according to the government.

The 'Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System-based Timing Acquisition & Dissemination System' project has been sanctioned to Accord Software & Systems in Bengaluru.

It aims to enable the indigenisation of timing acquisition and dissemination system, the use of Indian Constellation for acquiring time & development of a customised and flexible timing system as per range requirements.

Coimbatore-based startup Alohatech has been awarded the project to develop conductive yarn and fabric-making processes using graphene nanomaterials and conductive inks.

The outcome will be advanced E-textiles, utilising the inherent advantages for practical clothing applications, the DRDO said.