On Independence Day, ATAG, an indigenously developed howitzer, became part of a 21-gun salute at the Red Fort.
- The ATAGS is an indigenous 155 mm x 52 calibre howitzer gun.
- Howitzers is an umbrella term for a category of long-range artillery guns.
- It is developed by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) with its Pune-based facility Armament Research and Development Establishment (ARDE) being the nodal agency.
- The ATAGS project was started in 2013 by DRDO to replace older guns in service in the Indian Army with a modern 155 mm artillery gun.
- The armament system of ATAGS mainly comprises barrel, breech mechanism, muzzle brake and recoil mechanism to fire 155 mm calibre ammunition held by Army with a longer range, accuracy and precision and provides greater firepower.
- The ATAGS is configured with all electric drive to ensure maintenance free and reliable operation over a longer period of time.
- It has advanced features in terms of high mobility, quick deployability, auxiliary power mode, advanced communication system, automatic command and control system with night firing capability in the direct fire mode.
- The specialised gun system is compatible with C4I (command, control, communications, computers, and intelligence) 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 Army.
- The development process of ATAGS by the DRDO coincides with development of Howitzer Dhanush for Advanced Weapons and Equipment India of the erstwhile Ordnance Factory Board.
- In 2019, the Army and the Ministry of Defence gave bulk production clearance to produce 114 Dhanush.
- In the coming days, ATAGS and Dhanush will successfully replace older artillery systems.
SOURCE: THE HINDU,THE ECONOMIC TIMES,MINT