New assault rifle gears up for trials

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Mains Paper 3: Science & Technology | indigenization of technology & developing new technology

From UPSC perspective, the following things are important:

Prelims level: Ordnance Factory Board, INSAS rifle

Mains level: Defense manufacturing in India


Trials for replacement of INSAS rifles

  1. The trials of an assault rifle being developed by the Ordnance Factory Board (OFB) have made progress after initial bottlenecks
  2. The Army has been trying to replace the in-service INSAS rifle with a modern one

Stringent specifications

  1. The Army wanted 99% consistency in firing
  2. Army also asked for interchangeable barrels capable of firing both 5.56-mm and 7.62-mm caliber bullets
  3. The Army has decided to go for two different rifles — import a high-tech rifle in small numbers for the frontline infantry soldiers and procure the indigenous rifle in large numbers to meet the balance requirement


Ordnance Factory Board

  1. Ordnance Factories Board (OFB) is an industrial organization, functioning under the Department of Defence Production of Ministry of Defence, Government of India
  2. It is engaged in research, development, production, testing, marketing and logistics of a comprehensive product range in the areas of air, land and sea systems
  3. OFB is the world’s largest government-operated production organisation and the oldest organisation run by the Government of India
  4. It is often called the “Fourth Arm of Defence” and the “Force Behind the Armed Forces” of India
  5. It is amongst the top 50 defence equipment manufacturers in the world

INSAS rifle

  1. INSAS (an abbreviation of Indian New Small Arms System) is a family of infantry arms consisting of an assault rifle and a light machine gun (LMG)
  2. It is manufactured by the Ordnance Factories Board
  3. The INSAS assault rifle is the standard infantry weapon of the Indian Armed Forces
  4. The Indian Small Arms System (INSAS) was adopted in 1990
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