Kalyani from India gets artillery guns export order worth USD 155 million

According to India Today on November 10, Indian company Kalyani Strategic Systems Limited on November 9 announced it has received an order worth USD 155million for supplying 155mm towed howitzers to be delivered over a 3-year timeframe. The company did not disclose the buyer, saying simply that it is in a "non-conflict zone".
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Presentation of the ATAGS at DefExpo India 2018 in Chennai (Picture source: Army Recognition)

"This order, to a non-conflict zone, is a great testament to the Indian government's Aatmanirbhar Bharat agenda and its sustained push to promote exports of Indigenously Designed Developed and Manufactured (IDDM) advanced defense platforms from India", the company said.

Kalyani has been working with Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) to develop the advanced tower artillery gun system (ATAGS) and has also developed an ultra-light howitzer.

The Advanced Towed Artillery Gun System (ATAGS) is a towed 155 mm/52 calibre howitzer manufactured by Bharat Forge and Tata Power SED. The Advanced Towed Artillery Gun System (ATAGS) project was started in 2013 by DRDO to replace older guns in service in the Indian Army with a modern 155mm artillery gun. DRDO laboratory Armament Research and Development Establishment (ARDE) partnered with private players Bharat Forge Limited, Mahindra Defence Naval System, Tata Power Strategic Engineering Division and public sector unit Ordnance Factory Board (OFB) for this purpose. It was part of the Development cum Production Partner programme (DCPP) of DRDO.

The development of the gun took about 4 years and was expected to be complete by March 2017. The delay in the completion of the project was attributed to the realization of the ordnance and recoil system and supply issues with the manufacturing of sub-systems. The gun was expected to start user trials in 2017 and production was expected to start in 2019, which didn't come true. It was first publicly showcased at the 68th Republic Day parade on 26 January 2017.

The gun consists of a barrel, breech mechanism, muzzle brake and recoil mechanism to fire 155 mm calibre ammunition with a firing range of 48 km. It has an all-electric drive to ensure reliability and minimum maintenance over a long period of time. It has advanced features like high mobility, quick deployability, auxiliary power mode, an advanced communication system, automatic command and control system with night capability in direct-fire mode. The gun is two tons lighter than guns in the same category and is designed to provide better accuracy and range and is capable of firing five successive rounds in a short duration. It is compatible with C3I systems like the Artillery Combat Command and Control System (ACCCS) called Shakti for technical fire control, fire planning, deployment management, and operational logistics management of the Indian Army.

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Trials of the ATAGS 155mm howitzer were successfully conducted at Pokhran Field Firing Range between April 26 and May 2, 2022 (Picture source: Twitter account of ANI)