July, 19

    DRDO wants Start-ups to develop Long Range ROV (LROV) For UW Object Detection And Neutralization

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    Under the Technology Development Fund of the Defense Ministry, the DRDO wants Indian start-ups for the development of long-range remotely operated vehicles (ROV) with a 1.5-2 km operational range for UW object detection activities. LROV will allow for the identification and probable classification of UW objects, while keeping the Indian Navy’s vital assets out of the potential danger zone.

    A remotely operated underwater vehicle, or ROV, is often unmanned and tethered to its operator. It is an underwater robot that collects information about subsea structures and geological formations, such as hydrothermal vents, in the underwater environment.

    The primary objective of the TDF Program is to provide a significant boost to the military manufacturing industry by encouraging innovation and the development of defence technologies to put India on the path to self-reliance.

    Project Brief


    1. Public Limited Company, Private Limited Company, Partnership Firm, Limited Liability Partnership, One Person Company, Sole Proprietorship registered as per applicable Indian Laws.
    2. The industry has to be owned and controlled by Indian Citizen.
    3. The Industry with excess of 49% foreign investment will not be eligible.
    4. Industry shall also possess or be in the process of acquiring license/ development of products if the product/ technology under project requires license as per DIPP’s licensing policy.
    5. Company/ Organization which have been debarred/ banned/ blacklisted or the business dealings with whom have been “suspended” / “put on hold” by the Ministry of Defence will not be eligible.
    6. Industry may apply in individual or Association of Persons (AOP) i.e. consortium of Indian Companies consisting of two or more than two undertaking joint and several liability.


    Feasibility Studies for each project shall be carried out with the involvement of all important stakeholders (Industry, Subject Experts, Industry Associations, etc.). The aim of this study is to identify the projects, which can be undertaken.

    Feasibility study includes preliminary assessment of capability of industry to undertake the project, estimated cost and time for development, estimated cost of the component bearing the technology, etc. 

    Formulation of Specifications

    Based on the feasibility study, Qualitative and Quantitative specifications specifying the key parameters of the required technology will be drafted.  

    Issue of Expression of Interest (EoI) and soliciting response

    Project requirement will be posted on web-portal for soliciting EoI responses through online Mode.

    EoI will consist of brief technical requirement, all evaluation criteria, sub-criteria, etc including respective weight-ages accorded to each of them for assessing responses from EoI recipients.

    Industry shall have the choice to respond either in their individual capacity as EoI recipients or as an AoP (i.e. Consortium) of Indian Companies/ Organization/Academia.

    Selection of Development Agency

    Assessment of EoI responses will be undertaken as per shared criteria. Evaluation criteria relates to the indigenous research, design and development capabilities including past experience, other relevant parameters and performance of EoI recipients as may be required. In case of AoP i.e. consortium, the assessment shall be carried out with specific reference only to the roles and responsibilities of Individual members as mentioned in their AoP Agreements.

    Project Definition Document (PDD) will be issued to the selected industry (Development Agency). Development Agency shall then be required to submit Detailed Project Requirement (DPR) including Cost Estimates against the PDD. DPR shall be examined with specific reference to project milestones as described in the PDD against the evaluation criteria shared with Development Agencies.

    Development Agency (ies) selected post the examination of their DPRs will be issued a Project Sanction Order along with an Agreement.

    Upon signing the Agreement, the successful applicant will be issued a grant letter. 

    Cost Guideline

    1. The following criteria shall be used for determining whether, what and upto what extent the cost incurred by Development Agency shall be paid out of public funds
      • Cost Allowability
      • Cost Allocability
      • Cost Reasonableness; and
      • Terms of Agreement
    1. A cost is allocable if it is assignable or chargeable to one or more cost objectives on the basis of relative benefits received or other equitable relationship.
    2. A cost is reasonable if it would have been incurred by prudent entity in the conduct of competitive business.
    3. The following cost will be allowable
      • Manpower Cost
      • Equipment
      • Consumables
      • Academic (Maximum 40% of the total project cost)
      • Sub-contract
      • Domestic Travel
      • Overhead (Maximum 10% of the total approved project cost); and
      • Contingency
    1. A cost shall not be presumed to be allowable merely because the Development Agency actually incurred the cost, unless meets the test of relevancy, financial prudence, reasonability and relationship.
    2. The Development Agency shall not charge any unallowable cost and the following costs are specifically considered unallowable
      • Bad debts
      • Interest (on loans, etc.)
      • Permanent Building
      • Contributions or donations
      • Fines, Legal expenses and penalties
      • Advocacy and business development
      • Losses on other contracts
      • Entertainment
      • Alcoholic beverages
      • Business organization cost such as cost of incorporation, re-organization and merger
      • Workshop/ Seminar

    Funding Process

    1. The funding will be through provision of grants to Industry.
    2. The project cost up to INR 10 Cr will be considered for funding subject to maximum of 90% of the total project cost in general.
    3. Up to 100% funding may be considered on case to case basis.
    4. Industry may work in collaboration with academia or research institutions.
    5. The work involvement of academia cannot exceed 40% of the total projects cost.
    6. The funding is linked with Milestones.
    7. Fund will be released either as advance against the bank guarantee of the same amount as collateral or reimbursement basis on completion of a Milestone.
    8. Subsequent instalments will be released on successful completion of Milestones.

    Terms and Conditions

    1. Technology Development Fund (TDF) has been established to promote self- reliance in Defence Technology as a part of the ‘Make in India’ initiative. It is a programme of MoD (Ministry of Defence) executed by DRDO meeting the requirements of Tri-Services, Defence Production and DRDO.
    2. The scheme encourages participation of public/private industries especially MSMEs so as to create an eco-system for enhancing cutting edge technology capability for defence application
    3. This project requirement is primarily for MSMEs/ Start-ups; and large industries will only be considered if no MSME/Startup is found suitable for the development of this technology.
    4. MSMEs need to submit its UDYOG AADHAR Number and Start ups need to submit its DIPP ( Department of Industrial Policy & Promotion) certificate for consideration in the respective category of TDF scheme.
    5. The funding will be through provision of grant-in-aid to industries that may work in collaboration with the academia or research institutions to carry out innovation, research and development.
    6. Submission of EoI doesn’t guarantee PDD notification. PDD will be issued to shortlisted industries only after approval of competent authority.
    7. Suitable technical information will be provided to the Industries on submission of NDA (Non-Disclosure Agreement) during technical interaction meeting on ‘need to know’ basis.
    8. The company shall submit a compliance statement for all the eligibility requirements with necessary supporting documents for scrutiny.
    9. SOFT/ Type Approval (CEMILAC Certification) is required for airborne systems / subsystems. The details of certification process can be seen in the guidelines published on TDF Website.
    10. The current guidelines and policies promulgated normally allows to execute maximum of 3 concurrent projects through a Development Agency / Industry (either as Lead DA or as a Consortium Partner). However any DA can have not more than 2 projects as Lead DA.
    11. The company shall submit all information about their executed / ongoing / applied projects under TDF scheme during the submission of EoI & DPR.
    12. The tranfer / sharing of IPR will be carried out as per SOP of TDF. In addition filing of patents and other IPR protection will be carried out by DRDO as per broad guidelines and policies of DRDO.
    13. Only equipment essential for execution of the project will be considered for funding under TDF Scheme. The essentiality of the equipment will be established through a recommendation of PMMG of the project.
    14. Any Industry providing false information will be liable for action as per existing MoD guidelines.

    Register to apply

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