A revolutionary innovation of defense material to stop import drainage worth Rs 20,000 crore a year | India News – Times of India


Professor Shantanu Bhowmik, from Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham (AVV) in Coimbatore, has developed a groundbreaking composite material for defense personnel that is impervious to bullets, resistant to explosions, and fireproof. This 100% Indigenous innovation recently received approval from Chief of Defence Staff General Anil Chauhan and National Security Advisor Ajit Doval for widespread use in defence applications to improve the safety of soldiers and paramilitary personnel.
The development of this material was driven by the tragic Pulwama attack on a CRPF convoy, which underscored the need for blast-proof vehicles that could save soldiers’ lives. The composite, which combines ceramic, metal, and polymer materials, is primarily intended for use by defence and paramilitary forces, Bhowmik told TOI at the sideline of a lecture on his innovation at Central Glass & Ceramic Research Institute (CGCRI) organised by the Indian Ceramic Society recently.
This achievement is the result of seven years of dedicated research and hard work by Professor Bhowmik and his team. Three officers from the Indian Navy and one from the Indian Army registered for part-time PhDs under Bhowmik, and two full-time PhD scholars from AVV were involved in the research.
Deputy Chief of Army Staff Lt General Subrata Saha, who inspired Bhowmik to develop this unique composite, referred to it as a way to “Win India’s wars with Indian solutions.” His initiative to involve academia and industry in the indigenisation of the Indian armament has borne fruit in this innovative material.
Due to frequent fire incidents in bunkers in the Siachen Glacier, the composite was also designed to be fireproof, making it suitable for bunkers and field habitats. The composite panels were fabricated at AVV, Coimbatore.
“The hybrid composite’s effectiveness was confirmed through rigorous blast tests, showing it could withstand explosions equivalent to 8 kg and 10 kg of TNT at a stand-off distance of 5 meters with 10% shrapnel, as per NATO standards. Remarkably, the composite is about three times lighter than equivalent armoured steel,” said Bhowmik
Further research and testing indicate that with various material combinations, the composite can withstand even higher blast levels. The team also successfully tested a lightweight bulletproof composite, stopping sniper rifle armor-piercing bullets traveling at 830 m/s, meeting stringent STANAG level 3 standards, he added.
Field trials of the ultra-lightweight fireproof composite were conducted in the Siachen Glacier with support from the Northern Command of the Indian Army from December 14 to 17, 2021. The Northern Command’s test certificate confirmed the composite’s high promise for defense applications.
The combination of these three technologies—bulletproof, blast-proof, and fireproof—would revolutionize defense and paramilitary forces, providing a comprehensive solution for protecting structures, equipment, and vehicles. This innovation is projected to save thousands of crores in Indian currency, which currently flows out of the country for defense procurement.
The composites are dedicated to three national heroes:

  • Lightweight bulletproof composite: Netaji Subhas Armour
  • Lightweight blast-proof composite: Chhatrapati Shivaji Armour
  • Lightweight fireproof composite: Rani Laxmibai Armour

Major defense applications envisioned for these hybrid composites include bullet and blast-proof vehicles, bunkers, armored tanks, ship and boat hulls, bulletproof shields and jackets, helmets, high-pressure air bottle enclosures, bomb disposal containers, and thermally insulated fireproof tents.

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