BEML, a public sector undertaking under Ministry of Defence, has rolled out the first prototype of Mechanical Minefield Marking Equipment Mk-II, which would greatly benefit the Indian Army to demarcate minefields in hostile territory. Built on BEML TATRA 6x6 truck, the minefield marking equipment is an ‘Atmanirbhar’ product, developed through transfer of technology from R&DE (Engineers), DRDO.
Minefield marking is an important activity of Indian Army as it provides immediate warning signs for people moving in or nearby hazardous areas. Marking is done with the help of pickets and tying ropes on the pickets and it provides a physical barrier and thus delineates between known danger areas and those areas that are clear.
The equipment is an outcome of the Bandhan event that happened at the 2020 DefExpo in Lucknow, where BEML tied up with DRDO. BEML is expected to receive orders for more than 55 systems from MoD after the successful trial evaluation.
According to officials, the Mechanical Minefield Marking Equipment MK-II developed by R&DE (Engineers) is designed for marking the minefields at faster rate and semi-automatically with minimal human intervention.
"The equipment is capable of marking/fencing at a minimum rate of 1.2 km/hr with inter-picket spacing of 15m. The system has capability to place the pickets at 10-35 meters spacing in the step of 5m. The picket can be driven to a maximum depth of 450mm by this system," BEML said in a statement.
The Minefield Marking Equipment Mk-II is designed to operate in plains of Punjab, as well as semi-desert and desert regions of Rajasthan, in all weather conditions, close to the border with Pakistan. The system can store 500 pickets and polypropylene rope of 15km in length.
Explaining about the equipment, a BEML official said that the main subsystems that are to be integrated on to the vehicle are carrier vehicle, mechanical subsystem, pneumatic subsystem, electrical subsystem and electronic subsystem with selected sub-vendors. Sourcing of subsystems from industries established during development phase is being followed by BEML. The superstructure is being built by sub-vendors and supplying to Accurate Group for integration onto BEML HMV.
While announcing the prototype, M.V. Rajasekar, CMD, BEML, said “We are proud to be a partner with this project in our quest to achieve ‘Atmanirbharta’. The equipment will greatly benefit the Indian Army during operations. I am sure that this project would be the harbinger for many more projects to come.”
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