Being War-Worthy

The DRDO has developed a number of new combat engineering equipment for the Indian Army. The Vehicles Research and Development Establishment (VRDE), Ahmednagar, one of the premier laboratories of DRDO, in association with its sister labs and production agencies, has developed and produced a range of combat engineering equipment which include the Armoured Engineering Reconnaissance Vehicle (AERV), Armoured Amphibious Dozer (AAD) and Nuclear Biological Chemical (NBC) Reconnaissance Vehicle. These equipment are in the process of being introduced into service and will reduce dependency of Army on costly imported equipment.

The AERV and AAD are designed to provide engineering support in both offensive and defensive operations in plains, desert and reverine terrain. The AERV is equipped with a range of advanced survey instruments to carry out terrestrial and river-bed survey to facilitate construction of assault bridges across water obstacles and a number of other engineering tasks. The AAD is capable of providing integral engineering support to battle groups in offensive operations for construction of assault bridges and tracks to enable unhindered advance of mechanised columns through obstacle-ridden terrain. The NBC Reconnaissance Vehicle is designed to diagnose the existence of life endangering nuclear, biological and chemical contaminants in the atmosphere and cordon off such areas for remedial actions in the event of NBC attack by the enemy.

All of these equipment are based on tracked BMP 2 amphibious Infantry Combat Vehicle which allows operation on land and water with equal efficacy. The onboard equipment in each of these vehicles can be operated by the crew in hatch down condition from within the confines of the armour protected vehicles.

Ordnance Factory, Medak has been entrusted with the responsibility of production of these vehicles in collaboration with Bharat Electronics Limited, Pune. The AERV is already under limited series production and has entered service with the Corps of Engineers recently.

Two new AERVs from the second production order placed by the Army were flagged off on their way to a fighting formation of Army by the Engineer-in-Chief of Indian Army, Lt Gen RR Goswamy, at a function held at VRDE, Ahmednagar on March 3.

The demon-stration of floatation and earth moving capabilities of the newly developed AAD and NBC Reconnaissance Vehicle were also demonstrated to the visiting Engineer-in-Chief at Ahmednagar. Speaking on the occasion, Dr CL Dhamejani, Director VRDE, reiterated the commitment of the laboratory towards equipping Armed Forces with war-worthy equipment meeting their operational requirements.

-Praween Kavi
from New Delhi

NBC Reconnaisance Vehicle


Armoured Engineering Reconnaisance Vehicle


Armoured Amphibious Dozer