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A country’s projection of power relies in large part upon its military capabilities. Successfully being able to project and wield that power is a key diplomatic asset. The army with the best soldiers prevails. While the American, Russian and Israeli soldier battle-gears are known around the world as the most advanced, the Indian Army’s two-phase ‘Future Soldier’ program, earlier known as F-INSAS (Future Infantry Soldier As A System), will make our soldiers the most fiercely equipped soldiers on the planet.
F-INSAS has been taken up to equip Indian infantry with advanced weaponry, communication network and instant access to information on the battlefield. This program is similar to the future soldier programs of other nations. F-INSAS includes a fully networked all-terrain, all-weather personal-equipment platform, enhanced firepower and mobility for the digitalised battlefield of the future. The weight carried by soldiers will need to be reduced by at least 50%.
The fully integrated Infantry of tomorrow will be equipped with mission-oriented equipment integrated with his buddy soldier team, the sub-unit, as also the overall C4ISTAR represents C4 (command, control, communications, computers) and ISTAR (intelligence, surveillance, target acquisition, and reconnaissance) system. The intention of this program is to equip the soldier to ensure a dramatic increase in his lethality, survivability and mobility while making the soldier “a self-contained fighting machine”
The Indian Army has decided to divide the Future Infantry Soldier As a System (F-INSAS) program in favor of two separate projects. The new program will have two components – one arming the modern infantry soldier with the best available assault rifle, carbines and personal equipment such as the helmet and bulletproof vests and the second component is the Battlefield Management Systems (BMS). The bifurcation has been done on account of the budgetary convenience.
Arming the Modern Infantry Soldier:
Under this, our ‘special forces’ commandos will be loaded with the world’s best under-barrel grenade launcher assault rifles, carbines and hand grenades. They will be protected with equipment such as non-flammable, waterproofed, hard ballistic protected and bulletproof helmets, visors and vests. The new attire will enable commandos to carry extra loads and resist the impact of nuclear, chemical, radiological, and biological warfare. The uniforms will also be fitted with external and internal oxygen supply, fire-proof knee and elbow pads and hand gloves and laser eye protection goggles.
Battlefield Management Systems (BMS):
Our commandos will be equipped with Palmtop GPS navigation devices, world’s most advanced satellite phones, Thermal Imager, Integrated Multifunction Sight Device Night Vision Equipment, Laser Range-Finder, Digital Magnetic Compass, Colour Charge-Coupled-Device (CCD) Camera, Integrated Electro-Optical Surveillance, Fire Control Systems and advanced GPS receivers.
The list of sensors our soldiers will be carrying is just mind blowing – infrared sensors, electro-optical sensors, thermal sensors, spectroscopic sensors, electromagnetic and radio frequency sensors. What’s even better is that this entire kickass technology is weatherproof and all-terrain tested. The program strongly relies on the indigenous DRDO-led development of this technology with massive support from Israel. Once equipped with tech and advanced weaponry, ISF will be able to operate virtually in any and every sort of battle scenario.
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