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Monday, January 24, 2022

Indigenously developed next-gen AERV inducted in Army’s Corps of Engineers

The Indian Army has ordered 53 units of the AERV, which will be deployed with the individual engineering formations, mainly on the Western front.

Written by Sushant Kulkarni | Pune |
Updated: December 22, 2021 10:55:45 am
AERVThe AERV, which has been developed by modifying the amphibious infantry fighting vehicle BMP-II, has been designed to meet the tactical and combat requirements of military engineers carrying out terrestrial and under-water surveys in hostile terrains. (Express photo by Arul Horizon)

The indigenously developed next-generation Armoured Engineer Reconnaissance Vehicle (AERV) was formally inducted into the Corps of Engineers of Indian Army in a ceremony presided over by Army Chief General MM Naravane in Pune on Tuesday.

The AERV, which has been developed by modifying the amphibious infantry fighting vehicle BMP-II, has been designed to meet the tactical and combat requirements of military engineers carrying out terrestrial and under-water surveys in hostile terrains, primarily for the construction of assault bridges in desert, flat and even riverine areas for both offensive and defensive operations. The Indian Army has ordered 53 units of the AERV, which will be deployed with the individual engineering formations, mainly on the Western front.

The system has been designed by Defence Research and Development Organisation’s (DRDO) two facilities — Vehicles Research Development Establishment (VRDE), Ahmednagar, and Research and Development Establishment, Pune. The AERV is being manufactured by the Ordnance Factory, Medak, and as many as 14 electronic and sensing equipment have been installed by the Bharat Electronics Limited, Pune.

Instead of the turret, the revolving tower, which an armoured vehicle usually has, has been replaced in the case of the AERV with a laser range finder and other electronic equipment. The vehicle also has equipment measuring water currents, soil densities etc required for engineering columns to construct the bridges that can sustain desired operational load.

Despite the various restrictions imposed by the Covid-19 pandemic since the last one year, supply of the vehicle to Indian Army has been on schedule. As many as 15 units have already been delivered to the Indian Army as per the schedule.
“The system will enhance existing engineer reconnaissance capabilities of Indian Army and would be a major game changer in support of mechanised operations in future conflicts,” the DRDO said.

Speaking on the occasion, Gen Naravane said, “The old reconnaissance vehicles we had were extensively used in various operations. In the changing battlefield, we are acquiring new capabilities and new equipment. It is a matter of pride if these equipment are indigenously manufactured. You can recall that we recently inducted short-span bridging system developed by the DRDO. These new additions will certain augment the Army’s capabilities, especially on the Western front.”

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