New Delhi: The Indian Air Force (IAF) is making preparations to incorporate all radar systems—its own, those of the Army, and civilian radars—into a comprehensive framework that will enable an automated response from ground-based air defence units to intercept and destroy incoming enemy missiles, jets, and UAVs.
Consequently, a unified overview of the Western front and the border with China will materialize. The potential threat will be swiftly analyzed by sophisticated software, which will then determine the most suitable air defence weapon to counter it. Air defence weapons primarily consist of short and medium-range missiles, including advanced systems capable of engaging multiple targets.
The nationwide integration of radar systems is a crucial component of a comprehensive plan to establish a centralized control centre known as the Integrated Air Command and Control System (IACCS) within the IAF. The IACCS is interconnected through a secure optic fibre network called the Air Force Network (AFNet), which links various nodes of the system. Furthermore, these nodes are interconnected via optic fibre infrastructure laid down by the Department of Telecom and the Ministry of Defense.
The IACCS boasts the capability to leverage data from space-based platforms, fighter aircraft sensors, UAV video feeds, and airborne warning and control systems (AWACS). This extensive data integration enhances the precision and accuracy of the overall situational awareness.
The forthcoming centralized control centre will incorporate programmable missiles capable of autonomously responding to specific threats. “The reaction time to incoming threats has been reduced to a matter of seconds, rendering it impractical for human intervention. Hence, the necessity for automation,” revealed an anonymous source.
During a recent air defence seminar organized by the think-tank Centre for Air Power Studies (CAPS), DG Air Operations Air Marshal Surat Singh briefly discussed the new system. “We are integrating all radar systems and creating a centralized control centre through IAACS,” he disclosed. The Director General of CAPS, Air Marshal Anil Chopra (retd), emphasized the significance of battlefield clarity in reducing decision-making time, identifying it as a critical aspect of future warfare.
Insiders informed The Tribune that the integration of the Army’s network into the IACCS will be accomplished by utilizing the Indian Army’s proprietary air defence control and reporting system, named Akash Teer, developed by Bharat Electronics Ltd.