Learning from the ongoing Russian-Ukrainian war, the Indian armed forces are pushing for the adoption of new technologies. Focusing on artificial intelligence (AI), quantum labs, industry 4.0, machine learning, neural networks and deep learning algorithms, robotics and many more are gradually being introduced and adopted to ensure that Indian forces are more technologically savvy and adapted to meet new threats and ready for future wars.
To score 75e anniversary of India’s independence, Defense Minister Rajnath Singh on Monday inaugurated the first-ever Artificial Intelligence in Defense (AIDef) Symposium and Exhibition on AI-based solutions.
In his remarks after the inauguration of the AIDef, Defense Minister Rajnath Singh said that “India must work on the artificial intelligence mechanism ‘with extreme caution’ and must be ready to do in the face of any legal, ethical, political and economic upheaval that may result Technology.
According to him, work on AI needs to be done carefully so that the technology does not spin out of control in the near future. “This technology should be used for the progress and peace of mankind. In his remarks, he urged industry, the Defense Research and Development Organization (DRDO), DPSUs, universities, as well as those involved in the development of these technologies to be cautious and also to keep mind the ethics and dangers of AI. Stating that the progress of artificial intelligence cannot be stopped, he added, “When a new technology brings a huge change, its transition period is also huge and serious.
He also said that this technology can bring about enormous changes and that it is necessary to be ready to deal with political and economic upheavals as well as legal and ethical fallout. He added that society takes time to adapt when new technology arrives. The defense industry is undergoing changes due to AI, as AI is also used to train soldiers.
Referring to Russia as a technologically advanced country that is continuously advancing in the field of science and technology, the Defense Minister said, “India believes in the principle of ‘Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam’ (the whole world is one family). He has no intention of ruling the world. Adding: “We must develop the capacity of our AI technology so that no country can even think of governing us.”
Today, the minister launched 75 AI-powered defense products at the event, and some of them are already in use by the armed forces and the others are being deployed.
IAF and technology
The Indian Air Force (IAF) under the UDAAN (Unit of Digitization, Automation, Artificial Intelligence and Application Networking) has inaugurated the Center of Excellence for the intelligence at Air Force Station Rajokri, New Delhi. The center was opened on Saturday by Air Marshal Sandeep Singh, Vice Chief of Air Staff (VCAS).
It plans to take proactive steps to integrate Industry 4.0 and Artificial Intelligence (AI)-based technologies into its combat processes. These applications are developed in-house and in coordination with leading universities, MSMEs, PSUs that have expertise in AI. To handle all aspects of analytics, machine learning, natural language processing, neural networks and deep learning algorithms, a Big Data Analytics and Al platform has been commissioned at the Al center. And to handle high-end computing requirements that will be supported by the latest GPU-powered servers.
Read also: Industry 4.0 Technology: The Key Game Changer for Indian Manufacturing
Indian Army Tech Leap
After the Galwan incident in June 2020, the Indian Army made conscious efforts to integrate the latest technologies into the service and focused on setting up quantum computing labs, real-time application artificial intelligence in border areas; robotic surveillance platforms, 5G communications, augmented reality-backed air defense systems, automated drone detection systems and unmanned combat units for tank formations, and more. All these new technologies are adopted to ensure that the enemy cannot hack the encrypted data.
Over the past two months, the Indian Army’s Eastern and Northern Commands have held major technology symposia with industry. And the emphasis was placed on identifying the needs of the forces and on helping to personalize operational needs.
Earlier this summer, the “North-Tech” symposium focused on AI, virtual reality, firepower, disruptive technologies, firepower, augmented reality and other security solutions.
A similar “East-Tech” was conducted last week and, according to an official statement, the meeting was aimed at identifying advanced technologies that are critical to addressing operational challenges in the Eastern theater. Focused on “battlefield transparency” – Eastern Command wanted to identify the latest solutions in unmanned warfare, chemical-biological-radiological-nuclear (CBRN) defense, nanotechnology, communication systems, electronic warfare and information systems.
Recommendations made by the Ministry of Defense working group
Led by N Chandrasekaran, Chairman of Tata Sons, it recommended the following:
A corpus of Rs 1,000 crore to be provided annually for the next 5 years in the Defense budget to support AI activities;
Organize AI training courses for all defense personnel;
Integrate and integrate AI strategy with defense strategy;
Creation of a framework for working with industry;
And, establishment of a Defense AI High Level Council (DAIC) and a Defense AI Project Agency (DAIPA).
Indian army and technology
Financial Express Online reported in 2021 that the Indian Army established the Quantum Lab in 2021 to transform the current system of cryptography – algorithms used to encode data and voice for secure transmission. This was set up with the support of the National Security Council Secretariat (NSCS). The biggest benefit of having such a system in place is to ensure secure transmission during conflict, as radio waves are used by all major equipment to communicate.
Based on information available in the public domain, world-class surveillance systems that provide live feed to commanders are already integrated along the 3,448 km long Line of Actual Control (LAC) as well as the line 749 km long checkpoint (LoC) with Pakistan. These systems transmit live feeds in real time to commanders, which greatly facilitates their work as it helps to identify the enemy – armed or unarmed, man or machine.
How does AI help?
All embedded systems are AI-driven machines that are tuned for change and anomaly detection and interpretation, and have the ability to detect LoC and LAC level intrusions as well as read drone footage. All of these projects are part of the 12 domains of AI that have been identified by the NSCS.
In recent times, the Indian Army has adopted advanced quantum computing for 5G communications, deployed a base surveillance quadcopter. These quadcopters can operate at high altitudes and have the ability to provide real-time information within a range of 10-20 km.