TIDCO to set up centre for testing strategic electronics, drones in Chennai

A senior industries department official said testing is a critical step in design and manufacturing process of electronic devices.

Published: 19th August 2022 06:01 AM  |   Last Updated: 19th August 2022 06:01 AM   |  A+A-

EXPRESS ILLUSTRATION

Express News Service

CHENNAI: Chennai could soon become the hub for strategic electronics and drones as Tamil Nadu Industrial Development Corporation (TIDCO), nodal agency for defence corridor, is planning to set up an integrated testing complex on 10 acres of land at Vallam Vadagal in Kancheepuram district.

Ranked as the world’s second best and most cost-effective location for operating electronics research and development centre by fDi Benchmark, an investment location comparison tool from the Financial Times, the complex will consist of greenfield testing infrastructure, including electromagnetic compatibility or electromagnetic interference (EMI/EMC) testing, according to an official source.

A senior industries department official said testing is a critical step in design and manufacturing process of electronic devices. Tamil Nadu, which has several electronics manufacturing and design focused industries, has a huge potential for EMI/EMC and communication testing labs, sources said.

While the focus will be on electronic warfare and electro-optics and unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), the testing infrastructure will also help in attracting investments to Tamil Nadu from global and domestic aerospace and defence original equipment manufacturers (OEMs). It is estimated that Indian defence forces could procure unmanned aerial vehicles worth $3 billion over the next 10 years from domestic companies. 

This will be in addition to expected high growth in domestic, civilian UAV market, sources said.
While the total market size for electronic warfare systems in India is expected to reach nearly Rs 600 crore to Rs 700 crore by 2030, the current market size of the testing industry, estimated at Rs 130 crore to Rs 170 crore, may reach Rs 200 crore to Rs 220 crore by 2030, riding on increasing indigenisation in defence manufacturing, sources added.

While there are a few facilities for conducting defence electronics (Electro-Optics) tests in the country, there are no dedicated testing facilities available in public or private domain for MSMEs and other industry players. 

Though EMI and EMC tests are performed across various industries such as electronics, telecommunication, commercial aerospace and space, the testing requirements for EMI and EMC for defence applications are complex and specific.  Various regulatory bodies have also set specific limits on emissions that could be released from electronic devices.

These EMC (electromagnetic compatibility) regulations provide improved reliability and safety for anyone using electrical and electronic equipment. Tests assure that the device does not interfere with the operation of other equipment or fail to operate.



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