India to shun foreign standards for testing bulletproof jackets, vehicles

Trinetra

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Indigenous standards and testing parameters are being developed to evaluate the performance and effectiveness of protective gear against bullets, bombs and improvised explosive devises (IEDs) that would be specific to the Indian environment. These would replace foreign standards that are at present being relied upon.

“At present, we are using standards and parameters in vogue with NATO countries to evaluate the performance of bulletproof jackets, mine-protected vehicles and other protective gears like helmets and ballistic shields,” a senior officer associated with the project said.
“Since the technical specifications of weapons and ammunition being used in the Indian Subcontinent, many of which are of Soviet origin like the AK-47, are different from that being used in the West, application of NATO standards to test protective gear brought in inaccuracies and inconsistencies in the evaluation process,” he added.

The project was initiated by the NITI Aayog and it involves various stakeholders, including the armed forces, Bureau of Police Research and Development, Defence Research and Development Organsiation, Ordnance Factory Board as well as private manufacturers. “The new standards are expected to be certified and issued by the Bureau of Indian Standards in four to six months,” the officer said.

According to experts, stipulated standards for protective gear vary around the world and these should be in accordance with the threats found locally. Several countries have developed their own testing models, some of which have been adopted by others.

“For example, the types of IEDs that our mine protected vehicles are exposed to in counterinsurgency operations are different from IEDs used in other parts of the world due to different kind of explosives or materials,” an officer said.

“We have been collecting data and carrying out scientific analysis on IED blasts to determine specifications best suited for us,” he added. “The same is for bullets. Weight, material and velocity varies from manufacturer to manufacturer and from batch to batch, effecting ballistic performance and force of impact,” he added.
 

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