Mumbai, March 29 (IANS) Technology, construction and engineering major Larsen & Toubro (L&T) has joined hands with South Korea's Samsung Techwin Co. Ltd (STW) to develop tracked self-propelled artillery guns for the Indian Army.
These guns are expected to roll out from L&T's world-class dedicated facility at Talegaon, near Pune, a company statement said here Thursday.
The two companies also announced at the DEFEXPO-2012 in New Delhi that they would co-operate to develop the 155mm/52 calibre tracked, self-propelled gun with L&T as the lead partner for which a proposal was submitted to the defence ministry last year.
STW is the original equipment manufacturer for the South Korean K9 Thunder self-propelled howitzer, which is among the most successful of the guns in this category. The Indian gun will be a variant of this.
Along with the K10 ammunition re-supply vehicle, the K9 gun system is recognized for its functionality and unrivalled performance and a large number of them are in service in South Korea and other countries.
"As the lead partner, L&T will indigenously produce the self-propelled howitzer, thereby contributing to self-reliance in the defence sector. As part of the co-operation agreement between the two companies, STW will provide key technologies to L&T for localization of the K9 Thunder," said M. V. Kotwal, President, Heavy Engineering, and Member, L&T Board.
During the production phase, the joint offering would have an over 50 percent indigenous content, including components like fire control systems, communication systems, and life support systems which have already been used in India. This phase will also include significant localization of hull/turret structure and major subsystems, Kotwal added.
Besides offering the sophisticated gun system to meet the needs of the Indian Army, the co-operation would result in new avenues in Indian and global defence markets for the two companies.
The K9 Thunder is on display at the L&T stall in the Defexpo, with L&T-STW jointly announcing their readiness to field the system for Indian Army's User Evaluation trials which are expected to commence shortly.
Headquartered in Seoul, the Samsung Group is a multinational conglomerate composed of 29 affiliated businesses with a total turnover exceeding $200 billion, and Samsung Techwin as the technology and innovation leader in the group, specializing in defense & security solutions.
L&T is a $11.7 billion technology, engineering, construction, manufacturing and financial services conglomerate, with global operations in major lines of business for over seven decades.
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