DefSat 2024 holds IndSpace Wargame to build future defence space capabilities
New Delhi : The second day of DefSat 2024 dawned with a remarkable assembly of esteemed dignitaries, marking a pivotal moment in the convergence of strategic discussions and visionary insights. The inaugural session featured notable figures including the H.E Lt. Gen Gurmit Singh, Hon. Governor of Uttarakhand along with Dr. Samir V Kamat, and Secretary DDR&D and Chairman DRDO, both recognized pioneers in their respective fields. Other Dignitaries include: Lt. Gen Vinod G. Khandare PVSM, AVSM, SM (Retd), Principal Advisor, Ministry of Defence.
The focal point of the DefSat agenda on the second day lies in the integration of technology and data. Space technologies, augmented by emerging innovations like AI, AR, VR, nanomaterials, quantum technologies, communication tech, cyber and electronic warfare tech, and directed energy tech, propel the program's advancement. Concurrently, the amalgamation of geospatial and unstructured data from diverse sensors and devices, integrated with big data analytics, establishes the foundation for 24/7 situational awareness.
Lt. Gen Gurmit Singh, Hon. Governor of Uttarakhand. Gen Gurmit Singh, Hon. Governor of Uttarakhand emphasized, "The announcement of the budget of ₹1 trillion (approximately $13.3 billion) corpus to support technological research, emphasizing innovation as the foundation of development. This allocation for R&D signals a strategic move towards leveraging the private sector's capabilities, while initiatives like the IndSpace wargame offer insights into addressing key challenges and driving innovation. The integration of the private sector into the budgetary initiatives underscores the collaborative approach needed for sustainable technological advancement and national progress."
Dr. Samir V Kamat, Secretary DDR&D and Chairman DRDO stated how Space plays a critical role in bolstering national security and fostering network-centric warfare capabilities, particularly in navigation, ISR, and ballistic missile defence. “Our focus on Space Situational Awareness (SSA), space-based ISR, and deterrence capabilities in space underscores our commitment to safeguarding our interests. “Bellatrix, a startup funded under the Technology Development Fund (TDF) scheme, exemplifies our dedication to innovative solutions, such as the development of eco-friendly propulsion systems. Through initiatives like the 75 challenges for space-based R&D, DRDO remains committed to supporting startups and facilitating access to resources for cutting-edge research, " he added.
The IndSpace wargame exercise took center stage, simulating a complex scenario focused on detecting and analyzing potential threats, especially anticipated build-ups. It highlighted the importance of leveraging space ISR capabilities for military-grade intelligence and analysis, with key objectives such as identifying dark ships, deploying satellite resources, and setting military-grade standards. While industry readiness to develop solutions was evident, participants stressed the crucial requirement for budgetary support from the defence ministry. Moreover, the discussion underscored the necessity of civil-military fusion in practical terms to bolster defence capabilities.
Regarding cyber security for space assets, Gen Khandare, Principal Advisor at the Ministry of Defence, emphasized, "India boasts formidable cyber security expertise, as evidenced by the deployment of thousands of cyber guards during G20 and the Pran Pratishtha Ceremony. This underscores our capability in safeguarding digital frontiers. There is a pressing need for increased collaboration between defence sectors and cyber warriors from civil space, alongside foreign collaboration to expedite industry requirements."
"Result-based budgeting is imperative as we navigate through an era of economic warfare. By leveraging methodologies like MOSAIC, we can accurately assess the costs of decisions before engaging in battle, ensuring strategic resource allocation and maximizing operational efficiency." - Lt Gen PJS Pannu, Chairman Space Committee on Defence, SIA-India.