The only difference between the 39 and 45 caliber is extra range--30km vs 40km, unless I'm missing something. The shells are the same. So it's quite perplexing that the army would not first order the lower-risk 39 immediately when it is desperately short of guns and instead order the OFB's experimental 45 with the risk of not getting anything anytime soon. Of course it's preferable to have a longer range weapon but couldn't they first be safe and then task OFB to develop the 45 in the meantime? Something just doesn't add up.
There are many gaps which need filling in before trying to make sense of where this is headed:
1. Range is also a function of the type of munition, not just barrel length. If munition development (in a desi
effort), or market availability, (foreign purchase), is not in sync, expect more issues like were faced originally with Arjun MK I.
2. Regardless of the barrel length and munition type, as you get into 30-35+ km fire missions, accuracy/dispersion starts to become a major issue. What is "proved" on a range under highly controlled conditions seldom translates into real world performance.
3. Is the OFB "project" track independent of the army's "reported" plans to replace even 105mm with 155mm systems, for which RFIs have been issued yet again? If yes, then the OFB is being sent on a fool's errand with the 45 cal devpt., the 39 cal. should suffice.
What one fears will happen, similar to the HAL HTT40 episode is that OFB, partly led down the garden path by the army, partly by its own institutional ineptitude, will try and project itself on the larger requirement, competing with the global-pvt. desi
JVs in the fray. Much recrimination will result, including on BR...