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MACHINIST - DRDO's Avadi-based Heavy Vehicles Factory to manufacture 79 MBTs by 2010

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DRDO's Avadi-based Heavy Vehicles Factory to manufacture 79 MBTs by 2010
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Written by Vijay   
Thursday, 28 May 2009

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Chennai: 16 Arjun Main Battle Tanks (MBTs),built by DRDO's Avadi-based Combat Vehicles Research and Development Establishment (CVRDE),were handed over to Lt.Gen.D.Bhardwaj, DGMF of the Indian Army  on Monday, May 25. The Tanks were flagged-off by Dr.A.Sivathanu Pillai, Chief Controller, Research & Development & Distinguished Scientist, DRDO at a function in Heavy Vehicles Factory, Avadi. A total of 45 Arjun MBTs have been handed over to the army so far, leading towards the formation of the 1st Arjun regiment. The army  has ordered a total of 124 Arjun MBTs at a cost of Rs 1,760 crore and it will be fully executed by March 2010.

MBT Arjun is the result of long years of research and development by dedicated Indian scientists and some of the indigenous technologies used in the tank are: the Kanchan Armour, Hydro-pneumatic suspension, Armament system, Integrated Fire Detection & Suppression System, system engineering and system integration of complex weapon platforms. The prototypes and pre-production vehicles have undergone extensive field trials  and reliability tests.

Equipped with a 1,400 HP engine, MBT Arjun can clock speeds of up to 70 km/h and climb 30 degree radiant surface.The tanks can fire at a range of 3-4 km and are provided with superior protection features on par with  contemporary world tanks.

The regiment of 45 tanks will be subjected to  conversion training and field practice for 3 months following which the Army is planning to conduct a comparative trial with T 90 tanks in Oct/Nov 2009 to assess the operational deployment role of the tanks.

As there was a long gap from the R&D phase to production phase from 1993 to 2000, problems related to re-establishing production lines and vendor sources and resolving overseas issues like technology denial in view of Pokhran testing, change over and mergers of OEMS for the critical items, delayed initial commencement of production. In order to meet the production requirement, additional infrastructure facilities and machine tools were established at HVF, Avadi and Ordnance Factory, Medak.

 
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