Jet, Set, Go: Army Man 'Packs' a Punch to Tackle Disaster
CHENNAI:An Indian Army engineer, who was posted in Siachen and Kargil, has worked towards developing a jet pack—a device that would allow soldiers to fly using backpack rockets. According to the designers, the device could possibly save Army personnel from disasters like the recent avalanche at Siachen.
According to Major Lakshyajeet Singh Chauhan, who is serving the Electronics and Mechanical Engineers (EME) wing of the Indian Army for nine years, the jetpack can help soldiers skip climbing treacherous mountain terrains, and flee avalanches or landslides. It can also be used in counter insurgency, recovery and security operations, even at very high altitudes, according to the former M Tech student at IIT-Madras. Recently, the project has also been proposed to be taken up under the ‘Imprint India’ initiative supported by the Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD).
Speaking to The Sunday Standard, Chauhan pointed out that in general avalanche and crevice prone zones are 0.7 to 1 km in length. Using these jet packs, soldiers can cross these areas in a matter of seconds, as the optimum travelling speed is 60 km per hour or 17 metres per second.
“During the Kargil war, maximum casualties were reported when the Indian Army tried to climb the final 300-500 metres of the peak. Since the visibility is poor, with these devices, the soldiers could have jumped off to a safer location,” he said. The device also has immense potential in multi-terrain hopping. While crossing mountains, two soldiers wearing this can fly in a matter of few seconds and build a rope way between cliffs.