Indian Army Orders 15,000 Night Sights for Carl-Gustaf Tank Launchers

The Army requires night sights which should weigh less than 1.6 kg and can provide infantry to field view of minimum 60 degrees horizontal and 40 degrees vertical. The Indian Army had used 84 mm rocket launchers in the recent attack on Pakistani posts on May 9 and last year’s surgical strike on terrorist camps. The Indian Army has had Carl-Gustaf system since 1974. India’s Ordnance Factories have begun production of the latest version to supply system to 18,000 Special Forces to deal with any tactical situation.

“The uncooled thermal imaging sight, so desired by the Infantry, should be a lightweight and ruggedized device to enable accurate engagement of vehicle and human target by use of 84mm RL at night or hours of darkness or poor visibility,” a document issued by the Indian Army to global vendors said.

The Indian Army wants night sights which would facilitate the firing of all in-service ammunition such as 84mm high-explosive anti-tank (HEAT) 551 rocket, high-explosive armor penetrating rockets, as well as smoke and illumination shells.

“84 mm rocket launcher is the standard anti-tank weapon authorized to each infantry platoon. Its effective range varies from 500 to 800 meters. Presently, it does not have a night firing capability without the target area being illuminated. Since modern tanks now have night fighting capability, the movement of mechanized forces (tanks and infantry combat vehicles) will be more and more during night. To overcome this lacuna in the anti-tank capability of front line units i.e. infantry deployed or moving ahead night fighting capability is required for anti-tank weapons,” Brigadier Rumel Dahiya (retired), defense analyst, said.

The tender for purchase of approximately 15,000 night sights is expected to be issued in November 2017. With the intention of setting up a manufacturing plant in India for night sights, the Indian Army asked global vendors to supply the minimum quantity of night sights after which it can transfer technology to India. In the past, India had imported thermal imaging (TI) sights for T-72 tanks from Poland. These are also available in some other countries like France, Israel, Russia, Ukraine, USA etc.

“Some Indian companies, including in the public sector, are also engaged in R&D. The present requirement will perhaps permit Indian companies by themselves or in collaboration with foreign companies to place bids. The latest DPP guidelines will be followed to choose the supplier. This will help in indigenizing the TI sights over time,” Dahiya added.



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Categories: Army

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