About INS Vikrant
- The INS Vikrant – the 44,000-tonne indigenous aircraft carrier (IAC) – is the first to be designed and constructed in India.
- After its induction, the warship will be a key component of the Indian Navy’s push to establish itself as a “blue water” force, one with the ability to project its power on distant seas.
- The Vikrant stretches 262 metres in length, exceeding that of two football fields and is 62 metres wide. Around 20 aircraft can be parked in the hangar.
- It has a top speed of around 28 knots (more than 50 kmph) and a cruising speed of 18 knots with an endurance of about 7,500 nautical miles.
- Over 76% of the material and equipment on board the carrier is indigenous, including 21,500 tonnes of special-grade steel developed indigenously and used in Indian naval ships for the first time.
- This is the first time in the country that a ship of the size of an aircraft carrier is completely modelled in 3D and production drawings extracted from the 3D model.
- The Made-in-India warship is a feather in the country’s cap, as only five or six nations have the capacity of building an aircraft carrier.
It will be carrying
- the Russian-made MiG-29K fighter jet,
- Kamov-31 early warning helicopters,
- the indigenously manufactured Advanced Light Helicopters and
- the MH-60R multirole helicopter was made by the American defence major Lockheed Martin.
Reason for Vikrant’s Name
- INS Vikrant was India’s first aircraft carrier, which it acquired from the United Kingdom in 1961.
- It played a key role in the 1971 war with Pakistan which led to the creation of Bangladesh. It was decommissioned in 1997.
- Now India’s first homemade aircraft carrier will carry the name of her illustrious predecessor.
The Importance Of Aircraft Carriers
Powerful marine assets are essential for nations to not only project their marine powers, but also carry out domination operations. An aircraft carrier is no exception. An aircraft carrier makes it possible for a nation to travel far from its local shores for domination operations.
An aircraft carrier is often the capital ship of a battle group. Since it is a vulnerable target, many destroyers, frigates, and missile cruisers escort it.
It is a strong belief of many nations that a powerful aircraft carrier is a must for a nation’s navy to be called a “blue-water” navy. Simply stated a “blue-water” navy that can project national power across the high seas.
India’s First-Ever Indigenous Project
With INS Vikrant, India enters the elite club of nations that have the power and capacity of building an aircraft carrier. At present, there are only 5-6 nations that are members of the prestigious club, and India is soon to join the list. This comes as a prestigious moment for the country.
INS Vikrant is proof that India has the capacity, self-reliance, and expertise to build an advanced battleship like the INS Vikrant.
It is not the first time India has had an aircraft carrier. However, those aircraft were actually built by Russians or the British. For instance, the “INS Vikramaditya” is the Indian Navy’s sole aircraft, but it is important to note that the aircraft was in reality a Soviet-Russian warship.
The “INS Viraat” and the “INS Vikrant” are essentially manufactured by the British. These two were previously known as the “HMS Hermes” and the “HMS Hercules” respectively.
However, the INS Vikrant is a special entrant, as it is India’s first indigenously designed aircraft carrier. The fact fills the Indian Navy with immense pride. This proves to be another milestone touched for the Atma Nirbhar Bharat Mission.
Weapons And Equipment With The New Vikrant
The Navy put forward an official release on August 25, which said that the INS Vikrant will be the most potent sea-based asset. The INS Vikrant will be able to operate 30 aircraft. These aircraft may include Kamov-31 Air Early Warning Helicopters, MiG-29K fighter jets, Advanced Light Helicopters (ALH), the indigenously built Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) (Navy), and the MiG-29K fighter jets.
The IAC has a novel ski-jump launching aircraft that come with three “arrestor wires” that can be used for their recovery onboard.
The Kamov-31 and MiG-29K are already being used on the INS Vikramaditya, a 44,500-tonne vessel capable of carrying 34 aircraft. Moreover, the MH-60R Seahawks are built by Lockheed Martin (American aerospace and defence company).
theINS Vikrant is special for many reasons. Firstly, it will be the largest warship ever manufactured by an Indian shipyard. Secondly, once commissioned, the warship will be an incomparable military instrument, thanks to its efficiency to project Air Power over long distances. This includes Anti-Surface Warfare, Airborne Anti-Submarine Warfare, offensive and defensive Counter-Air, and Airborne Early Warning.
Some Other Features Of INS Vikrant
The Vikrant is a 262 m long and 62 m wide beauty, which has a maximum designed speed of 28 knots with an endurance of 7500 NM. It displaces around 43,000 tonnes when fully loaded.
Moreover, there are 2,200 compartments constructed for a crew of approximately 1,600. The warship also has specialized cabins for women officers and sailors. A very high degree of automation is used for machinery operations, survivability, and ship navigation. The INS Vikrant is equipped with the most advanced equipment and systems. It also has a medical complex with state-of-the-art medical facilities, including emergency modular OT, major modular OT, ICU, CT scanner, physiotherapy clinic, laboratories, dental complexion, X-Ray machines, telemedicine facilities, and isolation wards.
The warship steel used for the construction of the INS Vikrant was completely indigenized due to India’s adoption to be self-reliant in the field. The steel needed for the IAC-1 was indigenized through the Steel Authority of India Limited (SAIL), with the collaboration of the Indian Navy and the Defense Research & Development Laboratory (DRDL).
As per the Navy, the indigenous content of the project is around 76%. In this 76% come 2,500 km of electric cables, 2,000 valves, 23,000 tonnes of steel, 150 km of pipes, and finished products like galley equipment, refrigeration and air conditioning plants, hull boats, and steering gear.