New Delhi: Last week Lockheed Martin officials once again reiterated their desire to provide the most advanced version of their F-16 Fighting Falcon to the Indian Air Force, including features that are currently being deployed only with the advanced F-22 Raptor and F-35 Joint Strike Fighter. Starting this week, reports are emerging that this American aerospace major, and top global defence contractor, may tie-up with top Indian IT firm Wipro to supply all C4ISR-related requirements of the Indian armed forces.
The term C4ISR refers to Command, Control, Communications, Computers, Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance. With the integration of these functions under a network centric regime all information assets in the battle space are linked together. Such a linkage, for instance, will link the joint command headquarters with a forward based ground force, an expeditionary strike group and an airborne strike force.
Modern military doctrines portray network centric operations as the key to transforming information superiority into combat power.
Apart from negotiations with Indian IT giant, Wipro, reports also say that Lockheed Martin is in active discussions with the Indian Air Force for assistance in setting up an advanced data link-testing laboratory in India.
According to Lockheed Martin, its systems enable the military to coordinate thousands of air combat sorties a day, command and control hundreds of thousands of ground troops theater-wide, and collect and analyze intelligence data from sensors at sea, on the ground, in the air and in space.
Wipro already has deep technology expertise in embedded software and systems design, coupled with traditional strength in communications. The firm may be uniquely positioned to cater to the diverse technical needs of its aerospace, defence and satellite customers.