Prime Minister Narendra Modi will commission the nation’s first Indigenously built Aircraft Carrier Vikrant on September 2 into the Indian Navy.
With IAC Vikrant being ready for commissioning, India has joined the select group of nations including US, UK, Russia, China and France that have the niche capability to design and manufacture aircraft carriers above 40,000 tonnes, officials said addressing a curtain raiser media briefing over the issue.
The Navy said that Indigenous design and construction of Aircraft Carrier by Indian Navy and Cochin Shipyard Ltd is an example in the nation’s quest for Make in India Initiative with more than 76 per cent indigenous content.
The Indigenous Aircraft Carrier Vikrant has 2200 compartments including separate accommodation for women officers and female Agniveer sailors, Commodore Thapar said.
Navy Vice Chief Vice Admiral SN Ghormade said that the entire cabling of the IAC has been built in the country and the warship steel has also been made in India with the help of DRDO and SAIL which is a big achievement. He said that India can export it to other countries as well.
He said that the equipment of the warship have been made in 18 states and union territories including Kota, Ambala, Daman, Kolkata, Jalandhar, Pune and New Delhi.
The fourth phase of sea trials for IAC Vikrant were successfully completed in July during which integrated trials of majority of equipment and systems onboard including some of the Aviation Facilities Complex equipment were undertaken.
Maiden Sea Trials of IAC were successfully completed in August 2021. This was followed by second and third phases of Sea Trials in October 2021 and January 2022 respectively.
During these three phases of Sea Trials, endurance testing of propulsion machinery, electrical and electronic suites, deck machinery, lifesaving appliances, ship’s Navigation and Communication systems was undertaken.
The warship is made of a large number of indigenous materials such as steel, other equipment and systems which are manufactured by Indian industrial houses and about 100 MSMEs with the overall project cost of Rs 19341 crore.
The Indigenous Aircraft Carrier is 262 meter long, 62 meter at the widest part and height of 59 meter including the superstructure. There are 14 decks in all, including five in the superstructure.
The ship’s compartments are designed for a crew of around 1700 people including specialised cabins for women officers.
Defence Minister Rajnath Singh had earlier said that the commissioning of the Indigenous Aircraft Carrier will be a “golden moment” in the Indian defence history and “a major milestone event in the Indian Navy’s path of self reliance.”
The aircraft carrier will increase India’s reach from the Indian Ocean to the Pacific and Atlantic Ocean.
Responding to a query on impact on Indian maritime security in case war breaks out between China and Taiwan, Vice Admiral SN Ghormade said, “I assure that the Indian Navy is fully prepared to ensure the country’s maritime security. We keep our focus on new technological enhancements, we need to continuously develop our strength, we are capable to deter.”