Aligning with the Centre’s defence manufacturing roadmap, the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Kanpur has undertaken to groom indigenous manufacturers for military hardware.
IIT Kanpur’s Startup Incubation & Innovation Centre (SIIC) has collaborated with the iDEX (Innovation for Defence Excellence) to mentor MSMEs to create and commercialise technologies for the Indian military and defence PSUs.
SIIC-iDEX will jointly run programmes including long-duration incubation and prototype investments. The iDEX was launched by the Defence Innovation Organization (DIO) to attain self-reliance in defence production.
India is among the top military hardware importers and Prime Minister Narendra Modi has envisioned the country to not only become self reliant in defence manufacturing but a net exporter as well.
The iDEX framework was formulated by the Ministry of Defence (MoD) to operationalise and institutionalise efforts to engage the smaller enterprises and startups, which have the competence and flexibility to supply the Indian military with innovative and ingenious technological solutions.
“The partnership would leverage the Institute’s dynamic innovation ecosystem and strength in aerospace engineering, material science engineering, electro-mechanical systems and design for true actualisation of the program’s vision,” IIT Kanpur director Prof Abhay Karandikar said.
On its part, IIT Kanpur has been forging collaborations with the defence sector including academic collaboration, new innovation and drone-based initiatives.
The iDEX seeks to foster a culture of engagement with innovative startups, to encourage co-creation for defence and aerospace.