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Indian Air Force orders counter-UAV systems from Zen Technologies

The Indian Air Force (IAF) has placed a INR1.55 billion (USD21.2 million) order with local private company Zen Technologies for the supply of an undisclosed number of systems to counter unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs).

The Hyderabad-based firm provided no details about exact type or number of counter-UAV systems contracted by the IAF, but noted in a 3 September statement that deliveries are to be completed within 12 months, adding that the order is also “a significant step towards making India a drone and counter-drone technology export hub”.

The deal follows a follows a request for information (RFI) issued by India's Ministry of Defence (MoD) to local vendors on 29 June on the procurement of 10 counter-UAV systems under the ‘Indian-Indigenously designed, developed, and manufactured' category of the Defence Acquisition Procedure 2020.

According to the RFI, the systems must be capable of “detecting, tracking, identifying, designating, and neutralising” hostile UAVs using a laser-based, directed-energy weapon for the ‘hard-kill' effector option and employing global navigation satellite system (GNSS) and radio-frequency (RF) jammers for the ‘soft-kill' alternative.

The RFI noted that the shortlisted vendor would be permitted to enter into collaborative arrangements with a foreign equipment manufacturer to design the system, but Zen Technologies provided no details in this regard.

Although no further details have emerged about the counter-UAV system ordered by the IAF, Zen Technologies provides details on its website about its Zen Anti-Drone System (ZADS).

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