Indian Navy News & Discussion - 03 July 2018

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tsarkar
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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 03 July 2018

Postby tsarkar » 20 Sep 2020 19:55

Received via Whatsapp
-------------------------

*FISHING IN TROUBLED WATERS - A SUBMARINER’S STORY*
 
I am Commander Vinayak S Agashe, now past my prime, tired and retired, with grand children who probably view me as a useless ‘Grand Pa’ because I couldn’t, or wouldn’t, talk about anything that I did in the submarine arm of the Indian Navy. Nevertheless, not too long ago, I was a soldier in whites with gonads charged with testosterone. The only proof I have now, that I was such a man, is a coin sized ‘Vishisht Seva Medal’ with a ribbon, kept in a box in my bedroom, a rarely noticed object, just like the submarines that I sailed.
 
The submarine arm of the Navies of the world is generally referred to as the ‘Silent Service’ because one rarely gets to see it, and what it does routinely for a living is usually classified under the draconian ‘Official Secrets Act’. Very rightly so. A submarine is a deadly, silent, strategic weapon system that could start a war on its own, even with one’s best friend, or stop one with one’s worst foe. Therefore, in peace or war, if a submarine is seen or detected in any place other than its home base, every attempt is usually made to kill it at sight, because more often than not it is always behind enemy lines, doing something fishy. A submarine is usually perceived as an infamous ‘Peeping Tom’, wielding strategic as well as tactical weapons to make war, and hence to be punished, killed by friend or foe, with utter prejudice !!
 
Life on board electric / diesel propelled submarines of yore was like living in the stomach of a hydro dynamically curvaceous crocodile, hidden in the ‘Purdah’ of the dark depths of oceans, once in a while coming to periscope depth on dark nights to charge batteries, or surface to rendezvous with supply ship to take on board fresh rations, exchange personal mails, spares for machinery if required, or evacuate sick personnel. A submarine carries fuel, lub oil and dry rations to stay on patrol for up to 100 days without any support. As far as possible there is total electronic silence; to and fro coded messages are sent or received underwater on VLF.
 
Though submarines have hatches on top side to load supplies, torpedoes, bulky machinery and things like that while in port, routine entry of personnel into a submarine is usually through a hatch in the conning tower, sliding down a near vertical ladder. Once inside, for a tall man there is barely headroom to stand upright. None has a bunk of his own except the ‘Captain’ of the boat. The rest shares sleeping quarters on eight hour rotational basis, sleeping wherever one could find space. During wakeful hours one was always on duty, with something or the other to do, usually the underworld mischief, the ‘Izat Iqbal & Quam’ kind, in clandestine service to the nation.
 
There is no privacy on board, because due to lack of space one or the other controls of the complex systems of the submarine is located even in the ruddy toilet. While one is in deep contemplation like King Solomon, procrastinating on one’s constitution, someone or the other would come by to turn on or close one or the other valves and switches located in the toilet without even a comment ‘Excuse Mois, S’il Vous Plait’!! Fresh water was a scarce commodity and hence sea water and salt crystals in the cleft of the bums or armpit gave submariners permanent ‘Dhobi’s Itch’. The saving grace is that one didn’t have to shave or brush teeth, and therefore all submariners have the look of ‘Davy Jones’, the pirate of the Caribbean, when they are at sea !! 
 
The worst pathological fear of a submariner is a fire on board, death by fire, or asphyxiation by smoke and battery fumes. There is no place one can run off to, and it is not possible to jump out of a submarine when it is submerged. It is usually not possible to surface because one is always in the wrong place and if seen or caught would create a national embarrassment. Fire in a submarine usually leads to catastrophic consequences. Therefore, all told, submariners usually lead a charming ‘Kamikaze’ type of life, whistling ‘Que Serra Serra, whatever will be will be, the future is not ours to see, or worry about’.
 
The Official Secret Act has a shelf life of around 25 yrs and hence I could perhaps narrate an older story without inviting the wrath of ‘Aye Bee Jee’, simply to give you an idea of what the silent service routinely do to earn a living.  
 
During Sep / Oct 1986 I was in command of INS/M Vagli, a diesel electric ‘Foxtrot’ class submarine, a vintage boat compared to the Nuclear submarines now.
 
There was a party, ‘Command Reception’ of some sort, on the lawns of Command Mess in Mumbai and every one was enjoying their drink. Someone came and told me that Capt Suresh, the Captain (Submarines), was looking for me. As soon as I met Capt Suresh, he told me to come along to C-in-C’s office. In C-in-C’s office. there were Flag Officer Submarines and Chief of Staff. The C-in-C, V Adm. Chopra, asked me if I am ready to sail right away. I was briefed by the Chief of Staff and I left the party immediately and went on board Vagli.
 
During the next 3 hours all personnel were recalled, fresh rations along with a team of 12 clearance divers with 4 Geminis (inflatable rubber boats) were loaded, torpedoes were armed, Vagli was prepared for sea and we silently left harbour. So silently that ships secured alongside our berth also did not come to know.
 
My sailing orders were for an innocuous ‘operational patrol’, an euphemism for clandestine gathering of technical intelligence of every kind, whether to do with natural changes in oceanography, access into harbours, monitoring acoustic and magnetic signatures of ships of every kind, radio & radar intercepts, assessment of maritime threat scenarios, infiltration or exfiltration of intelligence operatives …..and so on, basically espionage. This particular mission was to snoop around for 30 odd days and we were to go close inshore, submerged as usual, and operate with acute risk and caution. We were to go into the territorial waters of Sri Lanka, a country which at that time was neither at war with us, nor showed any hostility. But in the murky underworld of espionage, a friend today could be an enemy tomorrow and hence it was our job to keep a track of friends as well as foes, knowing fully well that if caught, surrender was not an option, that we would be destroyed on sight, and no mercy would be shown to Peeping Toms. We had much in common with the slogan of the Gorkha Regiment of the army, ‘Kafar Bhanda Marnu Ramro’, or ‘better to die than surrender and chatter like a coward’.
 
Vagli approached operational area off Batticaloa at 100 meters depth. I called a meeting of the Departmental Heads, Lt Cdrs Robin Pereira (Ex O), PC Agarwal (Eng-O) and Lt Srikant (Electrcal-O), to explain to them the mission goals, what was on my mind, how we were going to play the hide and seek game, and to seek their wise counsel. On a submarine we did team work, with everyone doing their share of the myriad tasks, with ‘a-priori’ knowledge and zestful cooperation, doing what needs to be done without being told or reminded.
 
After discussion and deliberations it was decided that we would proceed with silent speed, at 100 meters depth, to take up position at the boundary of the territorial waters before sunset. Thereafter, during the dark hours, we would rise to a depth of 50 meters for the foray along the coast line, as close as we could get. Since the continental shelf was steep, the depth of water shown on our navigation chart of the target area as ‘Bottomless’ or more than 1000 meters.
 
A submarine operates on the simple ‘Archimedes’ principle; once under water, it maintains neutral buoyancy with zero trim, or horizontal position by filling Compensating Tanks (Comp) with water or by blowing out water with compressed air.. As the sunset, we were in position at 100 meters depth, zero trim, running minimum machinery so as to remain silent. Any sound produced on board is the bitter enemy of a submarine since sound travels far underwater and warns the enemy of our approach.
 
The sea-surface picture obtained using ‘Sonar’, like an underwater radar, indicated 4 trawlers, 3 merchant ships and 2 hostile war ships- possibly frigates. We crawled past avoiding the hostile vessels, like a silent shark, closer and closer to the shore line. We rose to 50 mtrs depth as planned. My men went about silently doing their own independent tasks of surveillance and gathering a plethora of strategic and tactical intelligence. The clock ticked loudly and time flew at super speed. I handed over the control room (Con), the nerve centre of the submarine, to the ‘Duty Officer (DO) On Watch’ and retired to my cabin a few yards away from the Con to cock a short routine snooze.
 
Around 2 in the morning, I instinctively sensed a slight change in the trim (the submarine was tilting nose up). Even before the DO could switch on the intercom to report the changed situation, I rose from my bunk and rushed to the Control room. A quick glance at the instruments warned me that for some strange reason we were involuntarily losing depth and slowly rising to the surface.

”Slow Ahead, Port and Starboard Motors, Both planes to Dive” I commanded. The DO repeated my command to the propulsion controller. The control planes (like elevators on an aircraft) are just aft of propellers and therefore the planes become more effective with increased wash of propellers. I could feel the vibrations increase as the propellers increased thrust; still the submarine kept losing depth- it kept going up on its own gradually.
 
‘Flood Comp-2, half ton”’, I commanded. The DO dutifully repeated my command to the Panel Chief, a senior sailor responsible for taking in water in Comp-2 filling water in the ballast tanks to make the boat more heavy so that it would stop going up.
‘Flood Comp-2 half ton” I repeated the commanded, rather superciliously. I could see that the Planes-man was already struggling with the planes control to get the submarine back to horizontal position, taking reference from the trim indicator on a panel in front of him. The submarine trim is controlled by Forward and Aft planes, using a pull push control, much like the joy stick of an aeroplane.
 
The normal laws of hydro-dynamics and submarine control system did not seem to be working. Vagli was responding rather erratically and seemed sluggish. If this continued, if we surfaced involuntarily and got detected, the consequences were unthinkable. It was as dangerous a situation as I could get myself into. I began to sweat despite the air conditioning.
 
‘Inspect Compartments’.
My voice was hoarse with tension and perhaps too loud for the confines of the control room. My command was dutifully repeated by the Officer of the watch (OOW) on the intercom. I could imagine every man on the ship scurrying about like rats inspecting every part of the submarine from head to toe and top to bottom. One by one they called from their individual stations to report ‘All Correct’. The OOW used a check list till the last man called.
 
‘All compartments checked correct”, he reported. Just a few minutes had elapsed since I took over the Con from the OOW. I could feel the sweat on my brows. I felt cold stares from those around me. I ordered, “ Flood Comp-2, one ton” The Captain was expected to be ice cool in an emergency, and here I was in cold sweat. I clenched my fists to take control of myself.
 
‘Flood Comp-2 one ton”, I croaked, trying to use my will power to stop the submarine from going up on its own. ‘Vagli, sweetheart, listen to me’, I spoke to the submarine silently. It seemed that Vagli actually heard my appeal, it started to very slowly come to heel. We stopped coming up.
 
‘Go back to 50 mtrs depth’, I ordered. The Ex-O repeated my order. In my consternation I had not noticed that Robin had come in quietly and taken over from the OOW. I exhaled slowly, it was very comforting to have Robin besides me.
 
It took about thirty odd minutes to go back and settle down at 50 mtrs depth, throttle down to our earlier silent speed. We had taken on board 25 tons of additional sea water. I could not figure out the reason for it.. I noticed that Aggy and Srikant too had come silently into the Con and were standing unobtrusively at the back.
 
‘OOW take over the Con’, I ordered and nodded to my team captains to follow me to the ward room. I gulped down two glasses of cold water, using the time to think, my team captains had the enquiring look that asked, ‘What happened ?’.
I smiled.
They smiled with me. It perhaps broke the tension.
‘One of those things’, I commented shrugging my shoulders. ‘Relax, let us wait and watch’, I said with a confident wave indicating ‘return to quarters’. I went back to my own bunk.
 
Exactly an hour later, Vagli started to misbehave again, this time in the opposite direction. She went into a nose down trim and started to dive. She was slowly gaining depth. Although I was in my cabin, I could sense this and came to Control room. The OOW immediately sounded the claxon for ‘Action Stations’. All crew members, even those sleeping, ran to their respective work stations.
 
The Exo. Robin had arrived at the Control room right behind me. From the corner of my eyes I could see that Aggy and Srikant too were standing in the corner, waiting and watching. I was the man in charge and every eye was focussed on me, everyone expected me to make Vagli behave. But Vagli was misbehaving.
 
Immediately we went into a reverse routine, opposite of what was done an hour earlier. All pumps were started to pump out water from Comp -2, trying to make Vagli lighter, fill it with compressed air. But despite these actions, Vagli kept going down, and further down, slowly but steadily.
 
Even if pumps were working at their rated capacity, in condition like this one, every minute is like 10 minutes. Needle on the Depth Gauge kept surging towards the Red mark. The red mark indicated Maximum Permissible Diving Depth or Crushing Depth, “Death Beyond”. Every pair of eyes in the Con turned to the depth gauge. The needle kept surging downward, ever so slowly. Another 50 meters and Vagli would reach its ‘Crushing Depth’. If it sinks any lower, we would be crushed by the water pressure around us. Vagli’s pressure hull would get crushed like an egg giving us instant nirvana at the bottom of the ocean.
 
The situation was so tense that any word from my mouth would be taken as gospel truth and all would interpret and instantly act out of conditioned reflex, without thought, suggestion or dissent. I held the destiny of Vagli and its crew by a slender thread that could break if I were to be hasty or lack wisdom. Another 10 meters were left for the needle on Depth Guage to touch the red mark.
‘Stand by to blow the Centre Group ’, I ordered. Centre group ballast are major ballast tanks from which if all water is blown out, Vagli would gain immediate positive buoyancy making it shoot up vertically like a Polaris missile). My order was with as much calm as I could muster. It was the last trump card up my sleeve. ‘Do it only when I say NOW’, I told the Panel Chief ( A senior sailor in charge of High pressure air panel), with a hand on his shoulder. In the small confines of the Control room my whisper sounded like a shout even in my ears. I glanced at Robin. But he was calm and steely, eyes bright and steady, no visible sign of any nervousness. He simply nodded his head, a few millimetres to convey ‘I am with you Captain’. It gave me courage to do whatever that had to be done, gauged by my youthful experience and wisdom. If I blew the centre group ballast tanks , Vagli would shoot up to the surface and thereafter be a sitting duck without sufficient high pressure air- that too close to enemy. It would be disastrous and embarrassing situation for our country. I was now left with the ‘Hobson’s Choice’.
 
Every pair of eyes in the Control room were on the ‘Depth-Gauge needle. I could imagine that every man on board Vagli, in their crew station out of sight from the Control room, would be experiencing the increased pressure. The crew would be praying silently to Varuna, the god of the sea, to make Vagli behave and to give the Captain wisdom and courage of conviction to save them from instant death in the vast depths of the ocean.
 
The Depth Gauge needle kept surging towards the red mark, ever so gradually now. Vagli was making strange noises of metal under extreme stress. .All crew were at Actions Stations. I felt fear gnaw my guts, adrenalin was racing my pulse. In my heart I felt lonely and sad. I clenched my jaws and jutted out my chin, chest out stomach in, to project the external appearance of a ‘hard hat’ Captain to reassure the eyes on me. I was scared.
 
The depth gauge reached the red mark ‘Crushing Depth’. My inner voice commanded me, ‘Don’t blow, wait’. Seconds that felt like hours ticked by.
 
But Vagli did hear my inner voice. The depth needle came to an abrupt stop on the red mark. The submarine stopped descending at the danger mark. It stood like that for a minute, what looked like eternity. After a long time I took a deep breath; I felt I had not breathed for quite some time. Then Vagli began to rise. First very slowly and then with increasing rapidity she started coming up. 
 
Frantic orders were shouted to flood the Comp tanks once again, to regain neutral buoyancy to get Vagli under control. By and by, after 15/20 minutes of hectic zestful activities by all hands on board, we were back at 100 mts depth and then to 50 mts. All of them perhaps were now smiling. Robin, Aggy and Srikant were god’s gift to me, a very special breed of men, sailors born to lead.
 
The courageous men of Vagli were back as a fighting lot, ready to complete the mission, even though Vagli had just recovered from some terrible unknown sickness, which I could not fathom. The four Geminis with 4 clearance divers each were clandestinely launched in the dead of the night, close inshore, at preselected beachheads to reconnoitre the water depth on the shore lines, soil conditions, tides, presence of habitation, pickets or enemy patrols, obstacles inland and so on. They were retrieved uneventfully after two nights. We completed our mission with complete stealth and set sail for the open sea. Once we were back in the open ocean, international waters away from shipping lanes, I radioed “ Amethist “- the code word for successful completion of task assigned.. We were intercepted by a Indian Navy escort after 32 hrs. Once in our territorial waters we surfaced and sailed back safely to home port with the escort.  
 
Happy stories don’t end abruptly in home port. There was the inevitable immediate court of inquiry. All were questioned and statements taken from all, especially Robin, Aggy, Srikant and self to review our actions, strengths and weaknesses of character and decisions. Vagli’s sensors were taken out and analysed. Everyone, top to bottom in the submarine arm wanted to know why Vagli had misbehaved when nothing seemed to be wrong with it. In addition there was the intelligence debrief, for the data we had collected.
 
There were rumours of every kind including quirks of Poseidon. Covert investigations were done in the target area where we had gone, using innocent looking fishing trawlers armed with complex oceanographic under water equipment. In the end it was revealed that area was prone to volcanic eruptions. So it was the volcanic eruptions on the sea bed which threw Vagli upwards and to compensate we took in an unusual 25 tons of additional ballast water. As we went forward, out of the volcanic area, the water temperature, salinity and density may have changed suddenly, making Vagli too heavy making us sink to the bottom uncontrollably.
 
A lesson was learnt by all, on the existence of deep sea volcanic activity in the area where we went to snoop; the endemic and unpredictable oceanographic characteristics there, endangering submarine operations. Many years later, similar deep sea volcanic activity was to trigger a catastrophic tsunami. I am glad that other men in their magnificent submarines were not wandering around in that area when the tsunami came.  
 
Few years ago, though retired, I was invited by the Navy to attend the decommissioning ceremony of INS Vagli, the last of the Foxtrot class submarines. There was a parade by young, energetic and smartly dressed submariners to bid adieu to Vagli. It had grown too old like me, no longer fit to prowl around in the deep dark depths of oceans. Along with some of my old ship mates we went into the innards of Vagli, touching here, fondling there, my mind flooding with happy, rich and proud memories of our life and times together. Cheers to INS Vagli, it was a submarine to love and to cherish, to take us to the great depths of hell, but bring us right back with flying colours, the ‘Gin Pendant’ on its periscope !!
 
All those brave men- all retired and settled all over the world now , some of them no longer alive except in my mind, where I could be with them again whenever I choose . I hope they get to read this soliloquy.
 
Later I worked in different capacities all over the world and it struck me that no where I could feel that intimacy, the spirit de corps, that spirit of romantic adventure, which I enjoyed in Submarine Service. We were singularly free of petty jealously . I remember a night when I was standing on a bridge of another submarine ploughing through a calm sea with the moon shining when I was struck with an almost mystical conviction that “ Every man below was my brother”. To even this day, when I see a man wearing a submarine badge, I stop him to wring his hand.
 

 
 
INS Vagli (S42), a Vela-Class diesel-electric submarine, served the Indian Navy for 36 years from 1974. It was decommissioned on 9 Dec 2010.
This submarine was to have been dry docked on land, in the Heritage Museum on the shores of Mamallapuram in Tamilnadu. However, due to delays in setting up the Heritage Museum, Vagli languishes in Chennai port, rusted and decaying.

tsarkar
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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 03 July 2018

Postby tsarkar » 20 Sep 2020 20:06

John wrote:tsarkar, P-17s use El/m-2238 but Fregat main radar is E band IIRC.

Fregat is NATO E/F Band corresponding to IEEE S Band. Elta 2238 is also NATO E/F Band corresponding to IEEE S Band. IEEE is the preferred nomenclature. Two radars in the same band will interfere with each other.

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 03 July 2018

Postby wig » 20 Sep 2020 20:53

Tsarkar ji, thanks for sharing the INS Vagli story

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 03 July 2018

Postby Manish_P » 20 Sep 2020 20:57

tsarkar wrote:Received via Whatsapp
-------------------------

*FISHING IN TROUBLED WATERS - A SUBMARINER’S STORY*
 
I am Commander Vinayak S Agashe, now past my prime, tired and retired, with grand children who probably view me as a useless ‘Grand Pa’ because I couldn’t, or wouldn’t, talk about anything that I did in the submarine arm of the Indian Navy. Nevertheless, not too long ago, I was a soldier in whites with gonads charged with testosterone. The only proof I have now, that I was such a man, is a coin sized ‘Vishisht Seva Medal’ with a ribbon, kept in a box in my bedroom, a rarely noticed object, just like the submarines that I sailed.....


:shock: What a tale, Sir!

Almost made me sweat just reading it (didn't help that i am claustrophobic)

Wow

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 03 July 2018

Postby maz » 21 Sep 2020 00:22

The Indra Lanza is a L band 3D radar https://www.indracompany.com/sites/default/files/lanza3d_radar_v19_0.pdf
Tata is providing 23 sets to the IN in partnership with Indra over a 10 year span. This has to be the L band set on the P17A and possibly the P15B hulls.

Note too that Terma SSR radars will be on the P17A and possibly the P15B hulls. The Terma SSR replaces the Garpun Bal SSR on new construction warships.

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 03 July 2018

Postby Aditya G » 21 Sep 2020 03:09

maz wrote:The Indra Lanza is a L band 3D radar https://www.indracompany.com/sites/default/files/lanza3d_radar_v19_0.pdf
Tata is providing 23 sets to the IN in partnership with Indra over a 10 year span. This has to be the L band set on the P17A and possibly the P15B hulls.

Note too that Terma SSR radars will be on the P17A and possibly the P15B hulls. The Terma SSR replaces the Garpun Bal SSR on new construction warships.


The Grapun Bal is a fire control radar no?

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 03 July 2018

Postby Aditya G » 21 Sep 2020 03:12

tsarkar wrote:Received via Whatsapp
-------------------------

*FISHING IN TROUBLED WATERS - A SUBMARINER’S STORY*
 
.... This particular mission was to snoop around for 30 odd days and we were to go close inshore, submerged as usual, and operate with acute risk and caution. We were to go into the territorial waters of Sri Lanka, a country which at that time was neither at war with us, nor showed any hostility. But in the murky underworld of espionage, a friend today could be an enemy tomorrow and hence it was our job to keep a track of friends as well as foes, knowing fully well that if caught, surrender was not an option, that we would be destroyed on sight, and no mercy would be shown to Peeping Toms.

....

The four Geminis with 4 clearance divers each were clandestinely launched in the dead of the night, close inshore, at preselected beachheads to reconnoitre the water depth on the shore lines, soil conditions, tides, presence of habitation, pickets or enemy patrols, obstacles inland and so on. They were retrieved uneventfully after two nights. We completed our mission with complete stealth and set sail for the open sea. .....


What a story. My first reaction, other than holding my breath, was "if they were doing it in '86, they could be doing it even now"

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 03 July 2018

Postby John » 21 Sep 2020 07:56

Aditya G wrote:
maz wrote:The Indra Lanza is a L band 3D radar https://www.indracompany.com/sites/default/files/lanza3d_radar_v19_0.pdf
Tata is providing 23 sets to the IN in partnership with Indra over a 10 year span. This has to be the L band set on the P17A and possibly the P15B hulls.

Note too that Terma SSR radars will be on the P17A and possibly the P15B hulls. The Terma SSR replaces the Garpun Bal SSR on new construction warships.


The Grapun Bal is a fire control radar no?

Garpun is for surface search and Target designation which Scantar 6000 radar could also do.

Thanks Maz for bringing it up.

https://www.terma.com/media/291389/sc6k_-_asia.pdf
https://www.terma.com/press/news-2018/defexpo-2018/

tsarkar wrote:
John wrote:tsarkar, P-17s use El/m-2238 but Fregat main radar is E band IIRC.

Fregat is NATO E/F Band corresponding to IEEE S Band. Elta 2238 is also NATO E/F Band corresponding to IEEE S Band. IEEE is the preferred nomenclature. Two radars in the same band will interfere with each other.

Strange won’t that cause issues for P-17?

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 03 July 2018

Postby putnanja » 21 Sep 2020 08:07

tsarkar wrote:Received via Whatsapp
-------------------------

*FISHING IN TROUBLED WATERS - A SUBMARINER’S STORY*
... 


Thanks for sharing. Very gripping tale. Reminded me of watching movie U571 where they too are diving and approaching Red line.

Salute to the unsung warriors who put their life on the line everytime they step foot into a submarine! May Lord Varuna look after you!
Last edited by putnanja on 21 Sep 2020 09:26, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 03 July 2018

Postby g.sarkar » 21 Sep 2020 09:05

Thanks for sharing the story of INS Vagli.
Check this out: https://stratpost.com/video-indian-foxtrots-last-dive/
Gautam

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 03 July 2018

Postby chola » 21 Sep 2020 11:47

^^^ Great story and great history.

Sadly, we are letting another great piece of our history be torn down and scrapped.

How can a nation the size of India not keep at least one of its original carriers as a museum? The Vikrant and Viraat gave me great pride as a child when we visited the USS Intrepid in NYC and my dad told me that India also had carriers. I had wished to bring my children to see an Indian carrier and tell them what it meant to me. Alas.

https://m.economictimes.com/news/defence/viraat-sets-sail-for-gujarat-to-be-dismantled-and-sold-as-scrap/amp_articleshow/78201692.cms


Aircraft carrier INS 'Viraat' sets sail for Gujarat, to be dismantled and sold as scrap

By PTILast Updated: Sep 20, 2020, 02:53 PM IST
MUMBAI: Decommissioned aircraft carrier Viraat on Saturday set sail for the last time, on way to Alang in Gujarat, where it will be broken down and sold as scrap. For Navy veterans who watched the huge vessel being towed by tug boats, there was a lump in the throat as they bade it an emotional farewell from the Gateway of India.

Viraat began its final journey from the Naval dockyard where it was berthed after being decommissioned in March 2017.

A Navy helicopter circling overhead provided a majestic backdrop to Viraat's last voyage from its home base for over three decades.

...

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 03 July 2018

Postby jaysimha » 22 Sep 2020 17:04



Digital Ceremony of Plate Cutting of P1135.6 Frigates

21ST SEPTEMBER 2020

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 03 July 2018

Postby Aditya G » 24 Sep 2020 01:50

#IndianNavy orderbook - all coming in next ~5 (ok 5 -10) years:

**Warships**

01 Aircraft CarrierProject-71 Vikrant Class
04 DestroyerProject-15B Vishakapatnam Class
04 FrigateProject 11356 Talwar Class
07 FrigateProject-17A Nilgiri Class
16 Corvette (ASW)ASW SWC
---
32 Total
---

**Submarines**

01 SSN Project-971 Akula
01 SSBN ATV Arihant Class
02 SSBN ATV Arihant Stretch Class
01 SSBN ATV S-5 Class
04 SSK Project-75 Scorpene Class
02 Submarine (Midget) Strategic Operating Vessel (SOV)

---
11 Total
---

Other classes:

01 LCU Mk-IV
02 Diving Support Vessel
01 Missile Range Instrumentation Ship VC-11184
01 Technology Demonstration Vessel (TDV)
04 Survey Vessel Large (SVL)

---
09 Total
---

The orderbook for surface navy is quite good, with reasonably capable platforms and systems. Good level of Indian content too. However, aside from SWC which uses waterjet propulsion, I don't see much innovation in design.

The submarine acquisition is slow, but Scorpenes and SSBNs are still being delivered. S

The worrying area is MCM and needs to be resolved soon.

------

IN Survey Vessel Large:

https://twitter.com/Aditya_G_Social/sta ... 79040?s=20

ASW-SWC:

https://twitter.com/Aditya_G_Social/sta ... 73856?s=20

------

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 03 July 2018

Postby chola » 24 Sep 2020 02:26

^^^ Cool! What's the corvette and the midget sub? Class names yet or just planning stage?

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 03 July 2018

Postby nachiket » 24 Sep 2020 03:15

chola wrote:^^^ Cool! What's the corvette and the midget sub? Class names yet or just planning stage?

No name yet for the corvettes and very few technical details available from what I can find. GRSE and CSL are sharing the order (8 each). Contracts were signed last year. CSL was L1 and GRSE L2 during bidding. Both were given contracts. These will replace the Abhay class corvettes. The Corvette classification has to be kept in perspective. These ships are 700 tonnes. The Saryu class OPV's are 2300t. Still they are larger than the Abhay class.

Link for GRSE contract: https://economictimes.indiatimes.com/ne ... 099130.cms

Link for CSL contract: https://www.business-standard.com/artic ... 141_1.html

No idea about midget sub.

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 03 July 2018

Postby chola » 24 Sep 2020 06:12

nachiket wrote:
chola wrote:^^^ Cool! What's the corvette and the midget sub? Class names yet or just planning stage?

No name yet for the corvettes and very few technical details available from what I can find. GRSE and CSL are sharing the order (8 each). Contracts were signed last year. CSL was L1 and GRSE L2 during bidding. Both were given contracts. These will replace the Abhay class corvettes. The Corvette classification has to be kept in perspective. These ships are 700 tonnes. The Saryu class OPV's are 2300t. Still they are larger than the Abhay class.

Link for GRSE contract: https://economictimes.indiatimes.com/ne ... 099130.cms

Link for CSL contract: https://www.business-standard.com/artic ... 141_1.html

No idea about midget sub.


Fantastic news on two counts. 1) 16 hulls is a right proper number for a corvette! 2) we are now fully into the modular multi-yard way of building ships -- momentum is kept up after P-17A. Yes, 700-ton is a wee bit small compared to the Saryu (which is approaching light frigate size) but the large number more than makes up for it.

More to keep an eye out for, this and the midget sub. This is like a golden age of indigenous projects with all the fighters, nuke subs and ships. I just wish the really big ones like the MRSV-LHP-LPDs or IAC2 could be finalize.

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 03 July 2018

Postby putnanja » 24 Sep 2020 08:00

Whatever happened to the mine sweepers? If I remember right, we were supposed to get some South Korean ones and that contract got cancelled too.

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 03 July 2018

Postby Philip » 24 Sep 2020 10:16

=== Russian ware peddling post poofed ===

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 03 July 2018

Postby Aditya G » 24 Sep 2020 22:08

putnanja wrote:Whatever happened to the mine sweepers? If I remember right, we were supposed to get some South Korean ones and that contract got cancelled too.


There is no clarity on minesweepers. IN has exacting requirements on the hull type for this type of ship, and the only supplier were South Korean ones before the deal fell through. At present IN has ordered clip on MCM suits from Thales, presumably for WJ FACs.

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 03 July 2018

Postby Aditya G » 24 Sep 2020 22:20

The Abhay class is rightly seen as a predecessor class for the SWC. From a naming perspective though I wager these are going to be the new Arnala class.

From a weapon perspective the class is built around IRL rocket launcher and Triple HWT. However what sets these apart is the use of water jets on this size of ship - thus far only seen on smaller FACs. One can safely assume use of noise dampening for engines and other components. The GRSE design is heavily influenced by Kamorta class while the CSL submission is somewhat like a larger version of Aadesh class:

Image

The schematics from GRSE suggest a search radar housed in will also be provided.

nachiket wrote:
chola wrote:^^^ Cool! What's the corvette and the midget sub? Class names yet or just planning stage?

No name yet for the corvettes and very few technical details available from what I can find. GRSE and CSL are sharing the order (8 each). Contracts were signed last year. CSL was L1 and GRSE L2 during bidding. Both were given contracts. These will replace the Abhay class corvettes. The Corvette classification has to be kept in perspective. These ships are 700 tonnes. The Saryu class OPV's are 2300t. Still they are larger than the Abhay class.

Link for GRSE contract: https://economictimes.indiatimes.com/ne ... 099130.cms

Link for CSL contract: https://www.business-standard.com/artic ... 141_1.html

No idea about midget sub.

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 03 July 2018

Postby Aditya G » 25 Sep 2020 13:13

Latest news

Kongsberg Maritime supply four HUGIN AUV survey systems to Garden Reach Shipbuilders in India

Sale includes HiPAP 502 high-accuracy acoustic positioning/comms systems to support AUV ops which will be installed on 4 Large Survey vessels currently in build for the IN

GRSE CMD Rear Admiral (Ret’d) Vipin Saxena: “We are pleased& look forward to making use of the HUGIN AUVs from KONGSBERG, which will augment the Indian Navy’s capabilities for coastal/deep-water hydrographic surveys to aid maritime operations, and will act as a force multiplier.”


Globally navies are trying to rationalize costs by combining Hydrographic and MCM missions on the same platform. There are some similarities between the 2 mission sets. Perhaps we can also consider the same?

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 03 July 2018

Postby Cyrano » 25 Sep 2020 16:11

Aren't we planning to have specialised submarine rescue vessels? I remember seeing something about it some time ago...

Given how things are evolving in the Indo-Pacific, we will also need some amphibious assault vessels for landing expeditionary forces.

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 03 July 2018

Postby Aditya G » 25 Sep 2020 22:07

amar_p wrote:Aren't we planning to have specialised submarine rescue vessels? I remember seeing something about it some time ago....


02 Diving Support Vessel

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 03 July 2018

Postby Philip » 29 Sep 2020 12:11

First steel cutting at Goa' of the first of 2 improved Talwars for the IN,2 more being built at the Yantar yd. The improved Talwars may come with Kalibir too,apart from BMos,etc.

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 03 July 2018

Postby tsarkar » 05 Oct 2020 21:01

Indian Navy scopes out Chinese corvettes in Bangladeshi Navy service during joint exercises

Image

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 03 July 2018

Postby tsarkar » 05 Oct 2020 21:10

Old photo of INS Sahyadri launching Klub S

Image

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 03 July 2018

Postby jaysimha » 06 Oct 2020 12:02

Bit dated, I think we missed it due lockdown,,,

https://zeenews.india.com/india/indian-navy-sets-up-new-innovation-and-indigenisation-unit-niio-to-boost-self-reliance-in-defence-manufacturing-sector-2302576.html

Indian Navy sets up new innovation and indigenisation unit NIIO to boost self-reliance in defence manufacturing sector
To boost self-reliance in the defence manufacturing sector, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh launched a Naval Innovation and Indigenisation Organisation (NIIO).

Aug 13, 2020

Image



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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 03 July 2018

Postby Aditya G » 10 Oct 2020 03:09

The Indian Navy has cancelled Reliance Naval and Engineering Ltd’s (RNEL) Rs 2,500-crore naval offshore patrol vessels (NPOVs) contract, owing to delay in delivery of the vessels, according to sources aware of the development.

https://www.hindustantimes.com/business ... aN4CJ.html

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 03 July 2018

Postby Aditya G » 10 Oct 2020 03:12

Aside from NOPVs even this training ship has got shafted.

Saw some pics of Shuchi and Shachi, they are lifeless tubs of metal rusting away.

Image

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 03 July 2018

Postby Aditya_V » 11 Oct 2020 16:18

Aditya G wrote:The Indian Navy has cancelled Reliance Naval and Engineering Ltd’s (RNEL) Rs 2,500-crore naval offshore patrol vessels (NPOVs) contract, owing to delay in delivery of the vessels, according to sources aware of the development.

https://www.hindustantimes.com/business ... aN4CJ.html


I think the L&T Vikram class is much better.

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 03 July 2018

Postby Aditya G » 11 Oct 2020 20:54

Aditya_V wrote:
Aditya G wrote:The Indian Navy has cancelled Reliance Naval and Engineering Ltd’s (RNEL) Rs 2,500-crore naval offshore patrol vessels (NPOVs) contract, owing to delay in delivery of the vessels, according to sources aware of the development.

https://www.hindustantimes.com/business ... aN4CJ.html


I think the L&T Vikram class is much better.


Aside from bow thrusters Vikram class do not have any other advantage compared to the Reliance NOPV design. The latter are larger (105m vs 97m), longer ranged (6000nm vs 5000nm) and better armed (76mm + 2x30mm gatling vs 1x30mm CRN-91).

It really is a pity that Reliance and ABG went under. Between them the Navy lost 5 OPVs and 3 CTS - both classes of ship that we desperately need - and to make it worse off setback privatisation in naval ship building by 20 years.

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 03 July 2018

Postby hnair » 13 Oct 2020 23:26

Locking up of huge amounts of funds as bank guarantee for years is a killer for small to medium firms (and even big ones by the looks) for long gestation projects like naval shipbuilding. Any small disturbance in schedule due to even a minor vendor means death for the prime-contractor that got the contract, as the Navy rushes in to exercise the bank guarantee, leaving the firm (and the partially completed hulls) to die a terrible death. Even sadder is that foreign shipyards seems to take their own sweet time, but without these same threats of bank guarantee encashments etc. Enforcing such a system for Khan’s amazingly efficient shipbuilders by USN is one thing, insisting that practice by IN on first timers who took great risks in a babudom economy is another.

Sounds like something that a ridiculously incompetent and risk averse defense minister would conceive. Long live Holy St Anthony

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 03 July 2018

Postby tsarkar » 13 Oct 2020 23:42

They were killed by MoD to ensure the continued monopoly of DPSU's.

Tragic

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 03 July 2018

Postby titash » 14 Oct 2020 01:47

tsarkar wrote:They were killed by MoD to ensure the continued monopoly of DPSU's.

Tragic


tsarkarji - disagree on this one.

Chota Bhai's level of influence in India until a few years ago was only rivaled by Mota Bhai. Bypassing MoD and making a phone call to the big man himself and asking for funds to save this critical piece of infrastructure should've been easy.

There's clearly labor, management, and financial performance issues here. If L&T is able to crank out OPVs but Pipavav can't, there's something else at play other than a MoD saazish.

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 03 July 2018

Postby Philip » 14 Oct 2020 02:58

MOD supposed to have scrapped the LPD tender after 7 years. Constant changing of reqs.

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 03 July 2018

Postby hnair » 14 Oct 2020 04:45

titash, do check the timelines and larger pic of Chota bhai’s down hill journey. Even Chotabhai misjudged and bought it at wrong time. He acquired Pipavav when it was already in red, thinking he got a good deal but his stars elsewhere was also fading and the liabilities caused by same bank guarantees sunk him. Contrary to what you say, L&T also did not do well as per their original plan. They had to sell off their signature Kattupalli facility in distress to another deeper pocketed conglomerate(hope they do better!).

Either yards in the Eastern and western seaboards were supposed to churn out major surface combatants (not just NOPV) and flattops at world class intervals. Instead they have both become cautionary tales for Indian private sector, to not mess around with entrenched interests both domestic and their foreign allies. This is not the only instance of Indian private sector struggling, as this forum hears of the artillery and small arms saga.

Instead of two mega naval facilities run efficiently by private sector (with some initial handholding) we have frantic up grading ancient and creaking facilities of PSUs. Oh what would have been!

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 03 July 2018

Postby tsarkar » 14 Oct 2020 10:11

https://www.thehindu.com/business/Indus ... 280472.ece

L&T's ship building foray isnt doing good either. Barring specialized projects where no one else has the engineering skills (nuclear submarine hulls), they get a raw deal. They developed the Sarvatra bridge for VRDE, a DRDO lab, but production contract went to a PSU. L&T incurred a huge loss on the project. Same for the Vajra artillery. They need more orders. Remains to be seen how many of the artillery players remain.

MoD has an obligation to protect DPSU jobs. Also DPSU's are more pliable. If the political party in power needs to create '000 jobs for its supporters/workers overnight across India, a phonecall to DPSU suffices.

Needless to say such decision affects quality, and is the reason for OFB's Politically charged workforce, but due the the nature of electoral politics, the DPSU monopoly will continue.

DPSU's have nothing to do with defence. Its more to do with job creation and electoral politics. And even Modi and BJP have the same compulsion as others before them.

And its silly to expect a large number rozgar yojana workers suddenly become skilled aircraft or tank or artillery fitters - though to be fair DPSU's do try very hard to train such workers.

Given that quality suffers, compromises are made. Import 50 Mirage 2000 and build 200 MiG-27 under rozgar yojana. The MiG-27 are so shabby that they are retired in 20 years.

Everyone knows the state of affairs, but no one can/will break the deadlock. There were high hopes from Modi Govt but 6 years later nothing has changed.

In India Rozgar Yojana takes priority over defence industry efficiency. Welcoming noises are made for the private sector but they are FUBAR-ed in reality.

https://economictimes.indiatimes.com/in ... 951222.cms

These are 35,208 posts in non-technical popular categories (NTPC) like guards, office clerks, commercial clerks and others, 1,663 posts for isolated and ministerial categories such as steno and teaches, and 1,03,769 for level-one vacancies such as track maintainers and pointsman.


What happens to all the guards, office clerks, commercial clerks, stenos if L&T and Reliance start building ships?

Its rozgar yojana national interest screwing defence industry national interest :roll:

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 03 July 2018

Postby Philip » 14 Oct 2020 11:08

I'vd been saying for a long time,CG vessels must be designed
with naval requirements in mind. Equipped for but not fitted with armament reqd. during hostilities,which can be swiftly added when reqd. Tasks such as mine countermeasures, ASW, harbour/ base,brown water defence apart from regular maritime " policing" duties must be factored in. For OPVs,one std.size and hull design should be used with differing weaponry.


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