INS Vikrant (2013)

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For the decommissioned Majestic-class aircraft carrier, see INS Vikrant (R11).
Vikrant class aircraft carrier CGI.png
Official Indian Navy CGI of INS Vikrant
Career (India)
Name: INS Vikrant
Namesake: INS Vikrant (R11)
Owner: Ministry of Defence
Operator: Indian Navy
Builder: Cochin Shipyard Limited
Laid down: 28 February 2009
Launched: 12 August 2013
Commissioned: 2018
Motto: Sanskrit जयेम सं युधि स्पृध:
Status: Under construction
General characteristics
Type: Vikrant-class aircraft carrier
Displacement: 40,000 tons
Length: 262 m (860 ft)
Beam: 60 m (200 ft)
Draught: 8.4 m (28 ft)
Depth: 25.6 m (84 ft)
Installed power: 4 × General Electric LM2500+ gas turbines
Propulsion: Two shafts
Speed: 28 knots (52 km/h; 32 mph)
Range: 8,000 nautical miles (15,000 km; 9,200 mi)[1]
Crew: 1,400 (including air crew)
Sensors and
processing systems:
Selex RAN-40L AESA radar
EL/M-2248 MF-STAR AESA
Electronic warfare
& decoys:
C/D band early air-warning radar[1]
Armament:

4 × Otobreda 76 mm
LR SAM systems with a multi-function radar[1]

CIWS
Aircraft carried:

30 × posible mix of Mikoyan MiG-29K
and HAL Tejas

10 × Kamov Ka-31 or Westland Sea King or HAL Dhruv
Aviation facilities: 10,000 m2 (110,000 sq ft) flight deck

INS Vikrant (Sanskrit: विक्रान्त víkrānta "courageous"[2]) (IAC-I) is the first Vikrant-class aircraft carrier built by Cochin Shipyard Limited for the Indian Navy and the first aircraft carrier built in India. Work on the ship's design began in 1999, and the keel was laid in February 2009. The carrier was floated out of its dry dock on 29 December 2011[3] and was launched in 2013. Construction is expected to be completed by 2016 and the ship is due to be commissioned in 2018. The motto of the ship is जयेम सं युधि स्पृध: (Jayema Sam Yudhi Sprdhah) in Sanskrit, which is taken from Rig Veda 1.8.3 and means 'I defeat those who dare to fight with me'.

Design[edit]

INS Vikrant during its launch in August 2013

INS Vikrant is the first ship of the Vikrant class of aircraft carriers. The name Vikrant (Sanskrit vikrānta, literally "stepping beyond") means "courageous" or "bold". It is 262 metres (860 ft) long and 60 metres (200 ft) wide, and displaces about 40,000 metric tons (39,000 long tons). It features a Short Take-Off But Arrested Recovery (STOBAR)[4] configuration with a ski-jump. The deck is designed to enable aircraft such as the MiG-29K to operate from the carrier. It is expected to carry an air group of up to thirty aircraft, which will include up to 30 fixed-wing aircraft,[5] primarily the Mikoyan MiG-29K and the naval variant of the HAL Tejas Mark 2, besides carrying 10 Kamov Ka-31 or Westland Sea King helicopters. The Ka-31 will fulfill the airborne early warning (AEW) role and the Sea King will provide anti-submarine warfare (ASW) capability.[6][7]

A schematic diagram of INS Vikrant

Vikrant is powered by four General Electric LM2500+ gas turbines on two shafts, generating over 80 megawatts (110,000 hp) of power. The gearboxes for the carriers were designed and supplied by Elecon Engineering.[3][8][9]

Construction[edit]

Vikrant is the first aircraft carrier to be designed by the Directorate of Naval Design of the Indian Navy and the first warship to be built by Cochin Shipyard. Its construction involved participation of a large number of private and public firms. The keel for Vikrant was laid by Defence Minister A.K. Antony at the Cochin Shipyard on 28 February 2009.[10][11]

The AB/A grade steel which was supposed to be supplied from Russia faced problems in delivery. To resolve this, the Defence Metallurgical Research Laboratory (DMRL) and Steel Authority of India Limited (SAIL) created facilities to manufacture the steel in India.[3][6] Reportedly, three special steels for the hull, flight deck and floor compartments were manufactured at the Bhilai Steel Plant and Rourkela Steel Plant. Due to this, this is the first ship on the Indian navy to be built completely using domestically-produced steel.[12] The main switch board, steering gear and water tight hatches have been manufactured by Larsen and Toubro in Mumbai and Talegaon; high-capacity air conditioning and refrigeration systems have been manufactured in Kirloskar Group’s plants in Pune; most pumps have been supplied by Best and Crompton; Bharat Heavy Electricals (BHEL) supplied the Integrated Platform Management System (IPMS), which is being installed by Avio, an Italian company; the gear box was supplied by Elecon; and the electrical cables are being supplied by Nicco Industries.[13]

The ship uses modular construction, with 874 blocks joined together for the hull. By the time the keel was laid, 423 blocks weighing over 8,000 tons had been completed.[14] The construction plan called for the carrier to be launched in 2010, when it would displace some 20,000 tonnes, as a larger displacement could not be accommodated in the building bay. It was planned that after about a year's development in the refit dock, the carrier would be launched when all the major components, including underwater systems, would be in place. Outfitting would then be carried out after launch. As per the Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS), sea trials were initially planned to commence in 2013, with the ship to be commissioned in 2014.[15][16]

In March 2012, it was reported that the project had been affected by the delay in the delivery of the main gearboxes for the carrier. The supplier, Elecon Engineering, attributed it to having to work around a number of technical complexities due to the length of the propulsion shafts.[17] Other issues resulting in delays included an accident with a diesel generator and an issue with its alignment.[18] In August 2011, the defence ministry reported to the Lok Sabha that 75% of the construction work for the hull of the lead carrier had been completed and the carrier would be first launched in December 2011, following which further works would be completed until commissioning.[19][20] On 29 December 2011, the completed hull of the carrier was first floated out of its dry dock at CSL, with its displacement at over 14,000 tonnes.[8] Interior works and fittings on the hull would be carried out until the second half of 2012, when it would again be dry-docked for integration with its propulsion and power generation systems.[1][3]

In July 2012, The Times of India reported that construction of Vikrant has been delayed by three years, and the ship would be ready for commissioning by 2017. Later, in November 2012, NDTV reported that cost of the aircraft carrier had increased and the delivery has been delayed by at least five years and is expected to be with the Indian Navy only after 2018 as against the scheduled date of delivery of 2014.[21] Work has begun for next stage which includes installation of the integrated propulsion system.

Launch[edit]

In July 2013, Defence Minister A. K. Antony announced that Vikrant would be launched on 12 August at the Cochin Shipyard. The ship was launched by his wife, Elizabeth Antony, on 12 August 2013.[22] Extensive sea trials are expected to begin in 2016 and the ship will be inducted into the navy by late 2018.[23][24][25]

According to Vice Admiral Robin Dhowan, about 83% of the fabrication work and 75% of the construction work was complete. He said that 90% of the body work of the aircraft carrier had been designed and made in India, about 50% of the propulsion system, and about 30% of its weaponry. He also said that the ship would be equipped with a long range missile system with multi-function radar and a close-in weapon system (CIWS).[23] After the launch, Vikrant was re-docked for the second phase of construction, in which the ship will be fitted with various weapons and sensors, and the propulsion system, flight deck and the aircraft complex will be integrated.[13]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d "India Floats out Its First Indigenous Aircraft Carrier". Defencenow.com. 2 January 2012. 
  2. ^ Singh, Harmeet (12 August 2013). "India unveils home-built aircraft carrier, INS Vikrant". New Delhi. CNN. Retrieved 2013-08-14. 
  3. ^ a b c d "Navy floats out first Indigenous Aircraft Carrier". The Hindu. 30 December 2011. Retrieved 31 December 2011. 
  4. ^ "Comparison of Chinese Aircraft Carrier Liaoning and Indian INS Vikrant". The World Reporter. 25 August 2013. Retrieved 25 August 2013. 
  5. ^ "Force Projection and Modernization of Indian Navy". SP's Naval Forces. Retrieved 4 May 2014. 
  6. ^ a b "Keel-laying of indigenous aircraft carrier in December". Hindu.com. 29 September 2008. Retrieved 1 February 2011. 
  7. ^ "Vikramaditya and Liaoning – forces of the future". IndRus. 5 December 2012. Retrieved 29 July 2013. 
  8. ^ a b "Elecon to supply gears for India's first aircraft carrier". Business Standard. 26 December 2011. Retrieved 5 January 2012. 
  9. ^ "India starts work on second indigenous aircraft carrier". The Economic Times. Retrieved 5 August 2012. 
  10. ^ "India overhauls coastal security, Navy gets charge". NDTV.com. 28 February 2009. Retrieved 1 February 2011. 
  11. ^ "India to lay keel of new aircraft carrier on Saturday | World | RIA Novosti". En.rian.ru. 26 February 2009. Retrieved 1 February 2011. 
  12. ^ "INS Vikrant's first victory: being built from Indian steel". Business Standard. 7 August 2013. Retrieved 7 August 2013. 
  13. ^ a b "‘Vikrant’ Reborn in Indigenous Avtar". Indian Defence Review. 12 August 2013. Retrieved 14 August 2013. 
  14. ^ "India joins elite warships club". Deccan Herald. 1 March 2009. Archived from the original on 15 July 2012. Retrieved 15 July 2012. 
  15. ^ Unnithan, Sandeep (18 February 2009). "Keel laying of indigenous aircraft carrier next week". Indiatoday.intoday.in. Retrieved 1 February 2011. 
  16. ^ "Indigenous Aircraft Carrier's nucleus ready – India – DNA". Dnaindia.com. 7 October 2010. Retrieved 1 February 2011. 
  17. ^ "Indigenous aircraft carrier a year behind schedule". The Hindu. 12 March 2011. Retrieved 31 December 2011. 
  18. ^ "INS Arihant on track". The Hindu. 3 December 2011. Retrieved 31 December 2011. 
  19. ^ "‘Indigenous aircraft carrier launch this Dec’". Zeenews.india.com. 
  20. ^ "First indigenous aircraft carrier to be completed by Dec: Govt, IBN Live News". Ibnlive.in.com. 2 August 2011. 
  21. ^ "Indian aircraft carrier: More costly, already delayed". Ndtv.com. 20 November 2012. 
  22. ^ "India launches home-built, 37,500-tonne aircraft carrier in a shot across the bow to China". New Delhi: National Post. 2013-08-12. Archived from the original on 2013-08-14. "The 37,500 tonne INS Vikrant is expected to go for extensive trials in 2016 before being inducted into the navy by 2018, reports say. With this, India joins the select group of countries comprising the United States, the United Kingdom, Russia and France capable of building such a vessel." 
  23. ^ a b INS Vikrant, first Indian-made aircraft carrier, enters water next week NDTV 11 August 2013
  24. ^ India launches first indigenous aircraft carrier INS Vikrant Times of India 12 August 2013
  25. ^ "Handover of aircraft carrier INS Vikramaditya to take place on November 16". 14 November 2013. 

External links[edit]