Defence-tech start-up Big Bang Boom Solutions (BBBS) Wednesday said it has bagged a Rs 1.5 crore grant for winning the 'See Through Armor' challenge by the Ministry of Defence under iDEX. The win entitles the start-up to a chance to co-develop the solution along with the Indian Army, and a grant of Rs 1.5 crore, BBBS Chief Executive Officer Praveen Dwarakanath told. Innovations for Defence Excellence (iDEX) was launched by the central government in April last year to create an ecosystem to foster innovation and technology development in areas of defence and aerospace. The programme aims to engage with micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs), start-ups, individual innovators, research and development (R&D) institutes and academia, and provide them grant and other support to carry out R&D for solutions that have potential for future adoption.
Detailing out its entry at iDEX, Dwarakanath said the chosen solution can offer situational awareness to a soldier sitting in an armoured tank. "When the soldier is in an armoured tank, they have visibility only about what's in front of them. Our solution gives the tank crew an ability to move naturally and almost feel that the armour around them is invisible," he said. Dwarakanath said the solution leverages augmented reality and virtual reality technologies that have been co-developed with its partners. The company works with researchers for developing these solutions, and the IP of the solution resides with the company. The extension of the chosen solution will be into unmanned vehicles and other technologies of the future, Dwarakanath said. He said the company would work with the defence ministry and is also open to engaging with defence agencies in other "India-friendly nations".
BBBS is working on several high-end technologies including new materials in armour, electronic warfare solutions, anti-drone technologies and armour piercing incendiary rounds. The company, Dwarakanath added, is also one of the finalists in the Illegal Usages of Drones Category of iDEX - the results of which are expected in a few weeks. BBBS has also secured an undisclosed amount of funding in the form of convertible notes from strategic investors. The company will invest part of the proceeds into a hedge fund to generate higher returns, he said. It will also be used for strengthening operations of the company and business development, he added. "Our interest in defence stems from the fact that defence technology has always been critical to defining super powers of the world. Our ambition is complete independence for India from defence imports," Dwarakanath said. BBBS intends to achieve this by creating indigenous tech, integrating tech from other start-ups in solutions, consulting to ramp up indigenous manufacturing, and facilitating tech transfer deals, among others, he added.