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Indian Navy News & Discussion - 15 Dec 2016

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Kakarat
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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 15 Dec 2016

Postby Kakarat » 12 May 2017 22:37

I also think we should build one more in the Vikrant class before starting Vishal. If the navy wants to move from STOBAR to CATOBAR then we should modify Vikrant class design into some thing like Charles de Gaulle which has similar dimension and displacement

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 15 Dec 2016

Postby Karthik S » 12 May 2017 22:43

Livefist‏ @livefist
India's 'Strategic Partnership' ready for roll-out. Single engine fighters & submarines among top4 programs to be kicked off. Details today.


Hopefully that is SSNs.

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 15 Dec 2016

Postby Philip » 13 May 2017 12:37

Super centre page feature on IAC-1 in the Hindu today.Done to counter Chinese propaganda of their carrier launch.Complexities of building a flat top well described.Great pic of the screws.

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 15 Dec 2016

Postby hanumadu » 13 May 2017 13:05

^^The web link posted here

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 15 Dec 2016

Postby Neshant » 14 May 2017 08:30

Fully involve US in the design of Vishal so they can learn advantages/disadvantages of small to mid-sized carrier designs & operation.


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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 15 Dec 2016

Postby Khalsa » 14 May 2017 15:05

Philip wrote:And some more.As this piece says,
EMALS is a poster child for immature technologies sent to the field too soon.


So is the IN still "steaming ahead" regardless with its majestic plans for a Yanqui style EMALS carrier ? I wonder which aircraft the IN plans to launch from its very own EMALS leviathan,since the F-18s cannot take the strain of an EMALS launch!


Are you serious Phillip ?
GOD !!! honestly man ... think before you just write propaganda wherever you are getting it from. Read man... go search extensively before writing stuff.
Its this kind of stuff you put on the forum without thinking that gets everyone going against you.

EMALS if anything is much more nicer to the airframe life than the one size fits all Steam Catapault.
EMALS if anything is not a catapault.

Its a system which pushes anything you want pushed and allows you to tinker with acceleration patterns and final velocities to meet the requirements of or your aircraft type (heavier or small like UCAV) or even aircraft loadout.

Here is two paras for you out of wiki

The main advantage is that this system allows for a more graded acceleration, inducing less stress on the aircraft's airframe.

Other advantages include lower system weight, with a projected lower cost and decreased maintenance requirements. The design includes the ability to launch aircraft that are heavier or lighter than the conventional system can accommodate. In addition, the system requires far less fresh water, reducing the need for energy-intensive desalination.

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 15 Dec 2016

Postby arshyam » 14 May 2017 15:24

Karthik S wrote:
Livefist‏ @livefist
India's 'Strategic Partnership' ready for roll-out. Single engine fighters & submarines among top4 programs to be kicked off. Details today.


Hopefully that is SSNs.

Did anything come of this? I didn't notice any news article...

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 15 Dec 2016

Postby Karthik S » 14 May 2017 20:16

Ditto, no further info on that.

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 15 Dec 2016

Postby Viv S » 14 May 2017 20:41


Cosmo_R
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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 15 Dec 2016

Postby Cosmo_R » 15 May 2017 04:04

Talking about MII I hope this is not how it will all end up:

"Nine years and several controversies later, the Maharashtra Police have placed an order for 5,000 bulletproof vests with MKU, a reputed military equipment manufacturer headquartered in Kanpur, who will be importing the vests from Germany.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city ... 605548.cms

If we can't make bullet proof vests in India, I harbor strong suspicions that stuff like fighters and subs are going to be made in India.

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 15 Dec 2016

Postby Karan M » 15 May 2017 04:06

MKU makes vests in India. it may import the aramid or kevlar.

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 15 Dec 2016

Postby Philip » 15 May 2017 10:55

http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/new ... 650094.cms
Sahayadri,Shivalik,Jyoti and kamorta.Emphasis very clearly on ASW and sanitising the Malacca Straits of Chinese subs.

https://sputniknews.com/military/201702 ... ndia-navy/
India Navy's battleship INS Betwa (File)Indian Navy Saves Its Massively Damaged Guided Missile Frigate Betwa © AFP 2017/ INDRANIL MUKHERJEE
MILITARY & INTELLIGENCE
11:18 23.02.2017
Xcpt:
New Delhi (Sputnik) — India has saved its most spirited ship that tipped over at a Mumbai dockyard last December. Defense sources say that INS Betwa, a guided missile frigate, is back on even keel. The Indian Navy hopes that the ship will be operational by 2018. The Indian Navy has spent approximately three million dollar in the process. Winner of the Indian Navy's "most spirited ship" award for the year 2016 had tipped over on December 5 during undocking evolution and it was suspected that the dock-block mechanism had failed. The accident had left two sailors dead and 14 injured.

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 15 Dec 2016

Postby jayasimha » 15 May 2017 11:10

I did not understand the significance of this news. Can anyone throw some light on this
TIA.


http://pib.nic.in/newsite/PrintRelease. ... lid=161764

Press Information Bureau
Government of India
Ministry of Defence
13-May-2017 16:28 IST
INS Darshak completes hydrographic surveys in Sri Lanka

INS Darshak of the Eastern Naval Command which has been on a two month deployment to Sri Lanka has successfully completed surveys of Weligama Bay and Southern coast of Sri Lanka. The result of the surveys were formally handed over by Captain Peush Pawsey, Commanding Officer, INS Darshak to Vice Admiral RC Wijegunaratne, WV, RWP & Bar, RSP, VSV, USP, ndc, psn, the Commander of Sri Lanka Navy, in a ceremony held at Colombo on 12 May 17.

The survey operations were undertaken in three phases and ship also visited Colombo and Galle harbour. The ship and ship’s survey motor boats fitted with multi beam systems were extensively deployed and the hydrographic survey data for more than 7000 nautical miles was collected. Ship’s integral Chetak helicopter also participated in the operations.

The Officers and sailors of Sri Lanka Navy had embarked ship during the conduct of joint survey operations and were also imparted training on various aspects of hydrographic surveying. In addition, the sailors of both the navies interacted during ship’s stay at Colombo and Galle and played friendly football, volleyball and basketball matches. Beach cleaning drives were also conducted as part of interaction.

INS Darshak has the unique distinction of having surveyed in Mauritius, Seychelles, Myanmar, Mozambique and Tanzania in the last few years. The successful completion of the maiden Joint Hydrographic survey with Sri Lanka Navy marks a new beginning in the bilateral relations.

CGR/VZ/49-17

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 15 Dec 2016

Postby Karthik S » 15 May 2017 11:14

My guess, possible Cheen submarine routes.

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 15 Dec 2016

Postby arshyam » 15 May 2017 11:47

Karthik S wrote:My guess, possible Cheen submarine routes.

And for Indian subs to play hide and seek in.

Do Chinese ships show up in the SL/BoB for ahem, "fishing" activities? Unless they get an idea of the underlying terrain, they cannot find stealthy ingress routes. I suspect our ships will shoo them away if we see them. Does anyone know if it is possible to prevent someone from doing surveys in our backyard?

Also, I hope we were not dharmic enough to share full high-res results of these surveys to SL or Maldives - surely the PLAN will try to get that data from them.

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 15 Dec 2016

Postby Karthik S » 15 May 2017 11:56

AFAIK, I haven't seen any news about cheen expedition in BoB, they will play 1 game at a time, they are busy with SCS now. Wasn't there a news couple of days back about cheen sub being denied permission to berth at Sri Lanka, will be really surprising if we didn't fish for it.

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 15 Dec 2016

Postby jayasimha » 15 May 2017 12:10

old news.. u mean some thing like this??

Capture of Chinese Ship in Tuticorin, TN 18-December-2013 17:27 IST

Press Information Bureau
Government of India
Ministry of Defence
18-December-2013 17:27 IST
Capture of Chinese Ship in Tuticorin, TN

A Vessel-‘MV Seaman Guard Ohio’ (Flag Sierra Leone) was interdicted and escorted by Indian Coast Guard to Tuticorin Port on 12th October, 2013 for investigation on the basis of intelligence inputs that the Vessel was likely to be involved in illegal transactions of arms and ammunition. At Tuticorin, joint investigation was carried out on 12th & 13th October, 2013 by all the concerned agencies. The Tamil Nadu Police has registered a case against the crew and guards of the detained ship “Seaman Guard Ohio” under various provisions of Arms Act, 1959, Essential Commodities Act, 1955 and Motor Spirit and High Speed Diesel Prevention of Malpractices in Supply and Distribution Order, 1990. The case is under investigation with Tamil Nadu Police.

This information was given by Defence Minister Shri AK Antony in a written reply to Shri Ram Kripal Yadav in Rajya Sabha today.

VP/HH

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 15 Dec 2016

Postby arshyam » 15 May 2017 12:30

^^ That was a well known case of either arms running or the kind of activity we are discussing about. But I thought that ship was of khanic persuasion, not chini.

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 15 Dec 2016

Postby jayasimha » 15 May 2017 12:42

Gurus,, got some link. interested may go through.
( MBD if RP)

https://www.indiannavy.nic.in/sites/def ... 5Jan16.pdf

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 15 Dec 2016

Postby Philip » 15 May 2017 13:20

Khals,keep abreast of the EMALS flaws before you advocate it too much.There are enough recent reports on the failure of EMALS abd problems plaguing the new Ford CV. Leave aside Trump's take on tech,the fact remains that EMALS thus far has been very expensive failure and the Ford simply another "Can't-a-Ford"! Prdon the pun.

http://thehill.com/policy/defense/33304 ... t-carriers
Trump wants 'goddamned steam’ catapults on new aircraft carriers
BY ELLEN MITCHELL - 05/11/17 05:36 PM EDT 955
30,116
Trump wants 'goddamned steam’ catapults on new aircraft carriers
© Getty
President Trump said he has told the Navy to return to decades-old steam-powered catapult technology to launch aircraft from the new Gerald Ford-class aircraft carriers, rather than use a new digital launch system.

Trump’s comments came during an interview with Time magazine, released in excerpts Thursday, where he bashed the new Electro-Magnetic Aircraft Launch System (EMALS) and said the Navy would instead be “going to goddamned steam.”

“I said, ‘You don’t use steam anymore for catapult?’ ‘No sir.’ I said, ‘Ah, how is it working?’ ‘Sir, not good. Not good. Doesn’t have the power. You know the steam is just brutal. You see that sucker going and steam’s going all over the place, there’s planes thrown in the air,’” Trump said in the interview.

“It sounded bad to me. Digital. They have digital. What is digital? And it’s very complicated, you have to be Albert Einstein to figure it out. And I said—and now they want to buy more aircraft carriers. I said, ‘What system are you going to be—‘ ‘Sir, we’re staying with digital.’ I said, ‘No you’re not. You going to goddamned steam, the digital costs hundreds of millions of dollars more money and it’s no good.’

EMALS, made by defense contractor General Atomics, is set to be used on Ford-class carriers, made by Huntington Ingalls Industries.
EMALS will replace the more than 60-year old steam-powered catapult systems used to launch airplanes. The steam systems take up more space on ships, are harder to maintain and can’t launch as many planes as electrical ones.

Huntington Ingalls and General Atomics referred questions on Trump’s comments to the Navy.
The Navy declined to comment.

The Navy has struggled with cost and schedule overruns on the new Ford-class carriers — growing from $27 billion to $36 billion in the last 10 years — prompting Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) in 2015 to call it “one of the most spectacular acquisition debacles in recent memory.”



https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/che ... cbf28f396a
The comments, published Thursday by Time magazine, came during an interview Monday evening at the White House. Trump recounted a conversation he had March 2 while visiting the yet-to-be-commissioned aircraft carrier Gerald R. Ford in Newport News, Va., and said he was told that the catapult on it does not have enough power.

President Trump speaks aboard aircraft carrier Embed Share Play Video14:14
Aboard the Gerald R. Ford in Newport News, Va., President Trump spoke about defense spending and the military, March. 2. Here is the full speech. (The Washington Post)
“It sounded bad to me. Digital. They have digital. What is digital? And it’s very complicated, you have to be Albert Einstein to figure it out,” Trump said, according to Time.

[Trump promises ‘great rebuilding of the Armed Forces’ while signing order at the Pentagon]

“And I said — and now they want to buy more aircraft carriers,” the president continued. “I said what system are you going to be — ‘Sir, we’re staying with digital.’ I said, ‘No you’re not. [You’re] going to goddamned steam,’ the digital costs hundreds of millions of dollars more money and it’s no good.”

But it’s reasonable for Trump to be frustrated with the cost of the new carriers, and he isn’t wrong that shifting back to steam on future aircraft carriers would be cheaper, Hendrix said. The cost of the Ford is expected to be $12.9 billion, and the price of the Kennedy is estimated at $11.8 billion, according to an assessment by the Congressional Research Service. Previous carriers without the new catapult cost $8.5 billion.


Now,from the reports what is v.clear is that the Ford CVs do NOT have te req. power for EMALS to work properly,despite the fact that they're N-powered! SEcondly,the huge cost difference between steam cats and EMALS.Almost $4.%B,yes,look at the report,$4.5B!
Therefore,In the Indian context,where money is acutely scarce,an N-powered EMALS carrier would be a hideously expensive white elephant.

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 15 Dec 2016

Postby Philip » 15 May 2017 13:45

Let's assume that our large N-powered EMALS costs somewhat lesser than the Ford,say around $10B.What can we get in the way of other systems in stead? Let's take a realistic look.

DDGs/FFGs ,Vizag and P-17A classes. Around $1-1.5B a pop

Yasen class SSGN...$1.%B.(Virginia USN subs $2.7B)

Borey class SSBN...$890M (Ohio $2B) These however are dated prices/estimates.

Kilo class SS...Offered to the Phillipines at $350M,the latest offer.

Amur...Supposed to be cheaper than te Kilo,bot say even $400.

one can see that we could obtain an entire fleet of 12,000K+ t SSGNs for the price of just one 65K carrier.

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 15 Dec 2016

Postby Karthik S » 15 May 2017 13:50

I still don't see the point of having a super expensive EMALS carrier when other core areas such as Subs (SSN, SSBN, SSK), DDGs, ASW are still lacking.

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 15 Dec 2016

Postby brar_w » 15 May 2017 15:15

Let's assume that our large N-powered EMALS costs somewhat lesser than the Ford,say around $10B.What can we get in the way of other systems in stead? Let's take a realistic look.


On what basis would you assume that? Ford carries quite a bit of first in class ship costs as they pertain to the US MIC, their economic manufacturing structure and shipbuilding costs etc. You can't just randomly pluck cost structures from thin air and assume away. The Ford Class itself will probably become sub $10 Billion with the 3 or 4 th vessel, but if there are a few new systems and the rest are taken from already operational hardware such as those on the current carrier you can be significantly below that. Case in point, compare the cost of another 100K ton CVN-77 to that of CVN-78. It is less than half.

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 15 Dec 2016

Postby Viv S » 15 May 2017 15:35

Philip wrote:Now,from the reports what is v.clear is that the Ford CVs do NOT have te req. power for EMALS to work properly,despite the fact that they're N-powered! SEcondly,the huge cost difference between steam cats and EMALS.Almost $4.%B,yes,look at the report,$4.5B!
Therefore,In the Indian context,where money is acutely scarce,an N-powered EMALS carrier would be a hideously expensive white elephant.

This is getting very silly Philip.

$4.5 billion is difference in cost between the final Nimitz-class carrier and the lead Ford-class carrier (requiring several changes in construction by virtue of being a new project). It is NOT the cost of the EMALS - that is failure of basic comprehension. And just FYI, the Ford's reactors generate two and half times more power than the Nimitz - nobody in their right mind has ever said it lacked the requisite power to operate the EMALS.

As far as India is concerned, opting for the EMALS for a ship delivered in the 2030s instead of a mechanical complex, space restrictive steam system is just plain commonsense.

Philip wrote:Let's assume that our large N-powered EMALS costs somewhat lesser than the Ford,say around $10B.What can we get in the way of other systems in stead? Let's take a realistic look.

DDGs/FFGs ,Vizag and P-17A classes. Around $1-1.5B a pop

Yasen class SSGN...$1.%B.(Virginia USN subs $2.7B)

Borey class SSBN...$890M (Ohio $2B) These however are dated prices/estimates.

Kilo class SS...Offered to the Phillipines at $350M,the latest offer.

Amur...Supposed to be cheaper than te Kilo,bot say even $400.

one can see that we could obtain an entire fleet of 12,000K+ t SSGNs for the price of just one 65K carrier.

What are the limitations of these systems? Lets take a realistic look.

DDGs/FFGs ,Vizag and P-17A classes. -> Cannot provide air cover to the fleet. Only provide air defence/point defence.

Yasen class SSGN, Borey class SSBN, Kilo class SS -> Cannot survey large parts of an ocean. Cannot independently strike non-static land targets. Cannot conduct VBSS ops or support any effort to 'police' civilian traffic.

Kilo class SS, Amur -> Shares the limitations of an SSBN. Cannot keep up with a surface fleet.

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 15 Dec 2016

Postby Aditya G » 16 May 2017 02:54

Interesting Indonesian ASW corvette seen in CORPAT with Indian Navy. Is this broadly how our ASW-SWC should be configured?

Image

These displace from 800-900 tons

Image

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 15 Dec 2016

Postby Bheeshma » 16 May 2017 04:06

Parchim class from east germany. They were basically disposed off when germany reunited. I would hope our junta class ASW would draw from Visby or Kamorta's stealth features and not a 1970-80's ASW corvette. I am yet to see any CAD models of the ASW corvette so I assume they are not finalized yet.

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 15 Dec 2016

Postby titash » 16 May 2017 08:01

Bheeshma wrote:Parchim class from east germany. They were basically disposed off when germany reunited. I would hope our junta class ASW would draw from Visby or Kamorta's stealth features and not a 1970-80's ASW corvette. I am yet to see any CAD models of the ASW corvette so I assume they are not finalized yet.


Janata class don't need stealth - they're expected to be small (700-ton) low-cost inshore ASW vessels operating within the EEZ. Doubtful if a SSK would expend a relatively expensive HWT or Anti-Ship missile on these craft.

The Parchim class was meant to be a centerpiece of East German shipbuilding during the cold war...the Janata class will likely do the same for India (hopefully built by 2-3 private shipyards to gain experience before building larger frigates)

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 15 Dec 2016

Postby Yagnasri » 16 May 2017 09:47

ASW ship without any Helicopter? A bit surprised.

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 15 Dec 2016

Postby Bheeshma » 16 May 2017 10:34

Petyas never had any helicopters.

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 15 Dec 2016

Postby Neshant » 16 May 2017 11:08

Start investing in R&D of indigenous anti-sub technologies.

Set up a complete R&D department just for that.

Subs are where China is concentrating most of its efforts.

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 15 Dec 2016

Postby Philip » 16 May 2017 13:11

Silly? One carrier cannot be on both sides of the subcontinent at the same time to protect the fleet! SEcondly,the IN will have different sqds./flotillas/task forces to carry out diff. operations and will not send the greater part of the fleet along with a carrier.What I've said before is that the 3rd carrier should be instead a sister ship of the VIkrant-2,perhaps slightly larger with a ski-jump.If the Shtorm concept can be leveraged,it could also have steam cat capability. You've seen how much an EMALS system (that doesn't work effectively too at the moment !) costs. Massive and even with N-power,the power req. isn't enough. Until the Ford class carrier proves its mettle after a few years of ops,there is no point in us trying to emulate the USN. Sheer stupidity. A sister ship of the Vikrant-2 would allow an easy switching of crews,aircraft,helos,etc. from one ship to the other and standardisation of eqpt.,weaponry,air assets,would increase availability of the carriers,allowing at least two to always be operational.

Such a policy would save us at least $5-6B allowing us to spend the money saved on subs,warships,helos,etc. This would give us a more balanced fleet instead of 3 different carriers (at least the VikA and VIkrant would operate the same air assets),which would tax the IN more in operations and maintenance/availability.

Secondly,the IN would have to conduct sev. operations simultaneously and it would be impossible for all elements of the fleet to have carrier air cover. In a CBG,the carrier would be the main strike element using its strike aircraft with PGMs/LRCMs delivered from a safe distance from the enemy's coastline. Other elements of the fleet would be used to prosecute enemy subs, and carry out other offensive and defensive ops .sanitising the Malacca Straits,defence of the A&N islands,coastal defence,offensive ops against Paki naval bases and land-based establishments,protecting our energy convoys from the Gulf,tracking Chinese subs and warships that might rush to the aid of the Pakis just as the Enterprise did in '71,which is something that might happen again with such a topsy-turvy pres in power like Trump.

Land based naval aircraft both LRMP and supersonic/subsonic bombers//strike aircraft are also essential for us to sanitise the IOR and conduct a wide range of ops simultaneously in the event of a JV spat with Pak and China.Plumping the major share of the naval budget into a huge white elephant is suicidal.

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 15 Dec 2016

Postby arshyam » 16 May 2017 22:42

hanumadu wrote:^^The web link posted here

Worth posting in full, probably the most detailed write-up of late.

In the heart of the iron beast, INS Vikrant - S. Anandan and Dinaker Peri, The Hindu

As India’s first indigenous aircraft carrier, INS Vikrant, is in its final stage of construction at the Cochin Shipyard, a walk through its massive innards and an examination of what its induction would mean for the Navy’s presence in the Indian Ocean.

Image

A cool breeze blows over you, belying the sultry May weather, as you perch atop a 70-m, 300-tonne gantry crane at Cochin Shipyard. From this vantage position, everything appears dwarfed down below. Hundreds of workmen nudging the ferrous giant, India’s maiden indigenous aircraft carrier INS Vikrant, to life in the last leg of a protracted and intricate process of warship construction of unprecedented scale in the country, resemble Lilliputians with a sense of steely purpose. Vikrant’s flight deck, more than twice the size of a football field at 2.5 acres, is strewn with concrete blocks and a maze of wires criss-crossing and disappearing into makeshift worksites.

It is tempting to picture MiG-29K combat jets flying off the deck, streaking into the deep blue ocean sky in a matter of a few years! The flyco (flight control) stationed in the superstructure located on the starboard side would be on the toes, the radars atop the island carrying out flight control and guiding the missiles the carrier will be equipped with to engage aerial targets.
Readying to set sail

The beast that is the INS Vikrant towers over you with a hint of intimidation as you enter the gangway, which leads further to the expansive aircraft hangar that straddles a few levels. “The carrier is 262 m long, 62 m at the widest part and has a depth of 30 m minus the superstructure. There are 14 decks in all, including five in the superstructure,” says a yard supervisor.

Outfitting had been apace on Vikrant, named after India’s first aircraft carrier that was acquired from the U.K. in 1961, ever since its ceremonial launch in August 2013, and work is almost nearing completion on all decks below the fourth from the top which houses the hangar.

The carrier’s hull structure is in good shape and a few openings made on the flight deck to lower equipment into the hangar and to fix the restraining gears for takeoff will be capped once the work is over. Two turntables on either half of the hangar resemble those in discotheques. Aircraft ferried from the flight deck through the elevators located on either side of the superstructure will be positioned on the tables for easing them into their designated slots.

The hangar, capable of accommodating an assortment of 20 fighter aircraft and helicopters, is a hive of activity, with work progressing on the support lines along the stowage points, a four-tonne overhead maintenance crane and a fire curtain that will partition the space. The aviation facility, designed by Russia’s Nevskoye Design Bureau, is gradually coming in place, with the supply of equipment under way. “In view of the aviation facility being laid out soon, the Navy has already drafted in aviation technical crew from the aircraft carrier INS Vikramaditya to be of support,” says Captain P.A. Padmanabhan, in charge of the Navy’s Warship Overseeing Team (WOT).

As you take the ladder to the flight deck, three markings across the aft deck, indicative of the position of arrester wires that latch on to the landing gear of approaching fighter aircraft to bring them to a halt, come to view. A 40-tonne aircraft salvage crane sits snugly next to the superstructure to haul up aircraft in case one falls overboard. “God forbid it never gets used,” a worker remarks.

Image
All on board: “Some 200 big and small Indian industries rose to the occasion to harness the required technology and deliver the goods.” The twin-propellers that will drive the carrier. | Photo Credit: Special Arrangement

Most fascinating right now is the work on sailor living spaces on the sixth deck from the top, where an impressive state-of-the-art sanitation space, with modern showers and vacuum toilets, has come up.

“We have 92 such sanitation spaces along the ship, of which 25 are ready,” informs a manager in charge of accommodation. The yard has drawn on the experience of creating living spaces on the platform vessels it had built for a Norwegian firm to design the crew living spaces on Vikrant.

“Aspects of human-machine interaction have been factored in while designing the spaces,” says Bejoy Bhaskar, Cochin Shipyard’s chief general manager (design and defence projects) and project director for Vikrant. Further up, on the fifth deck is the vessel’s largest alleyway, which with a length of nearly 240 m, links the forward compartments of the carrier to the aft.

“A similar corridor on INS Viraat used to be playfully called the Rajpath,” chuckles Capt. Padmanabhan.

Quest for aircraft carriers

India, with a two-decade legacy of operating carriers, started looking for a home-grown carrier way back in the 1980s when the idea of an air defence ship (ADS) was mooted. It lingered, even after the Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS) sanctioned the project in 2002. An ‘ADS Bay’ commissioned by then Chief of the Naval Staff Admiral Madhavendra Singh at the Cochin Shipyard a year later stands testimony to it.

The project went through a design spiral, with the Department of Naval Design (DND) heeding to the aspirations of the Navy, coming up with the functional design of an indigenous carrier that was at least “five times bigger than any warship it had designed before”. Already into indigenisation in a big way, the first indigenous aircraft carrier (IAC) as it came to be known, cemented the Navy’s credentials as a builder’s navy.

As India embarked on the effort to build its first carrier in the form of Vikrant, it is going through a learning curve. The Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) in its report in July last year pointed to serious delays in the construction. “It is evident from the PERT chart (September 2014) of Cochin Shipyard Limited (CSL) that while the delivery of the carrier with completion of all activities is likely to be achieved only by 2023, the Ministry and the Indian Navy continue to hold the timelines of final delivery of the ship as December 2018,” the CAG said in the report.

However, Navy officials say that at that time there were delays in procuring some equipment, which have now been sorted out. “Issues with procurement of some Russian equipment have been resolved,” says an officer, adding that the final induction will be earlier than initially estimated. The Navy wants the carrier to be fully ready to begin aviation trials by the time it takes delivery of the ship. Aviation trials are the most challenging aspect in the whole chain. As former Navy Chief Admiral Arun Prakash says, “It will be a huge challenge to Navy test pilots. Then we will know the defects in the design.”

Mega nuts and bolts

The public sector Cochin Shipyard, with an impressive track record as a commercial shipbuilder and of carrying out all the refits and upgrades of INS Viraat, became a natural choice for the execution of the ambitious project, critical to the Navy’s philosophy of having three carriers in its fleet at any given point in time. The CCS sanctioned a sum of ₹3,200 crore which was subsequently revised to ₹19,341 crore for the new carrier, which set the ball rolling on a slew of innovations, technological advancements and capability-building within the country and operational synergy among a host of agencies.

“Vikrant, the ‘mother’ of all platforms, has 2,300 compartments designed to user specifications for crew, systems, piping, fluids, ventilations, cabling… Nearly 1,500 km of cabling, almost the distance from Kochi to Mumbai, criss-cross its innards,” informs Capt. Padmanabhan, pointing to the trunking in the compartments. The yard carried out detailed designing, developing 3D models and creating mock-ups on the old-school ‘mould loft floor’ for critical parts like anchor pocket and hosepipe arrangement besides using virtual reality to simulate extremely critical parts. Italian firm Fincantieri was roped in to provide consultancy for the propulsion package while Russian support was sought for the aviation complex given that the carrier would have an integral fleet of Russian MiG-29K fighters and Kamov helicopters, a la INS Vikramaditya, which would also ensure interoperability between the carriers.

“It was a quantum leap from about 7,000 tonnes to 40,000 tonnes. We are no more deterred by the size of a warship,” says Capt. Padmanabhan, hinting at the larger domestic carrier that’s on the drawing table.

Some 200 big and small Indian industries rose to the occasion to harness the required technology and deliver the goods, from the large gear boxes to the access implements, for Vikrant. When sourcing of steel clouded over the project, Defence Metallurgical Research Laboratory, a Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) lab, joined hands with the Navy to develop warship-grade steel which was manufactured by the Steel Authority of India in its plants at Rourkela, Bhilai and Bokaro. The supply remained steady since 2006. The first block was lowered to the building bay in 2009, officially laying the keel of the Navy’s dream project.

“The new construction demanded new welding consumables and processes, which we developed in collaboration with the Naval Materials Research Laboratory, a DRDO facility. We also trained about 500 welders and assigned them to the vessel,” says Bhaskar of Cochin Shipyard. Building the ship literally block by block and integrating them in what was termed as ‘grand assembly’, the yard fabricated and welded about 23,000 tonnes of steel, measuring the vessel’s weight and stability all along. “Its tonnage is roughly about 30,000 right now,” says Capt. Padmanabhan. Vikrant was given a pontoon-assisted launch, in a first in India, when limited dock space prevented further construction. The yard made a special jig to move the 104-tonne ‘A bracket’ that buttresses the propeller shafts — as long as 99 m and 69 m —on the carrier’s hull.

“Look here, one of the eight diesel alternators, each generating 3 MW power, has already been set to work,” says a Navy officer part of WOT, signalling to a large machine room on the carrier. “Together, that’s about 24 MW power, enough to light up an entire city, but the idea is to have adequate redundancy. The power system is fully automated, thanks to Bharat Heavy Electricals Ltd., which has put together an Integrated Platform Management System for Vikrant. The schedule for testing, trials, calibration and qualification of individual equipment — including the gas turbines that will power the carrier — is getting ready. Shafting, piping and integration of most auxiliary systems are over on Vikrant. “The outfitting is 62% complete,” says Bhaskar. Trials of all auxiliary systems are set to get under way by the year end, parallel to the construction of modern living spaces on the upper decks.”

Once operational, Vikrant is going to sport a gender-sensitive living environment and infrastructure, with provision to accommodate eight women officers. The ship will then accommodate 1,645 personnel in all, including 196 officers.

An aircraft carrier is a command platform epitomising ‘dominance’ over a large area, ‘control’ over vast expanses of the ocean and all aspects of maritime strength, says Capt. Padmanabhan, as he signals a sailor with the Falcons crest on his service overall to stop by. “Look, he’s one of the air technical sailors who have worked on board Vikramaditya and would know how best to deploy and exploit the aviation support facility on Vikrant. It’s just a matter of time before the aviation facility comes up.” True to its purpose, Vikrant, meaning victorious and gallant, has its crest depicting arrows resembling the delta wing of combat jets going in all four directions. It is capable of blunting attacks from any direction, says Capt. Padmanabhan.

Safety boards stare at you from every corner on the vessel, cautioning against letting the guard down. Workers, nearly 1,200 of them, toil day in, day out on Vikrant in two shifts to realise the ambitious dream of operationalising a potent home-grown carrier.

Force multiplier at sea

Even as debate continues over the relevance of aircraft carriers with the proliferation of ballistic missiles and cost-benefit analysis with respect to submarines, there is an undeclared carrier race unfolding in the Indian Ocean Region (IOR) between India, China and Japan. India has its force structure planned around three aircraft Carrier Battle Groups (CBG). While one would be deployed on each coast in the Arabian Sea and Bay of Bengal, the third would be in maintenance and repairs — ensuring the availability of two ships at any point of time.

For now the Navy has only one carrier, INS Vikramaditya, contracted from Russia under a $2.3-billion deal and inducted into service in November 2013. INS Viraat was recently retired from service after cumulatively serving the British and Indian Navies for over 50 years. In that line, when the new INS Vikrant joins the Navy sometime after 2020, it would be the fourth aircraft carrier to defend India’s shores. Each of these carriers has grown in size, capability and sophistication adding more teeth to Navy’s power projection.

The first Vikrant displaced 20,000 tonnes and operated a mix of Westland Sea Kings, HAL Chetak and Sea Harrier jets. Viraat displaced 28,500 tonnes and Vikramaditya displaces 45,400 tonnes. The new Vikrant will displace 40,000 tonnes.

While the first two carriers operated the Harriers which are capable of short take-off and vertical landing, the Vikramaditya’s angular fight deck enables hosting of Mig-29K fighters; the modern Russian fighters will fly from Vikrant as well. In addition, the U.S. is expected to help India with the aviation trials of Vikrant.

Back at the gangway, as the sun beats down on the workers on a harsh tropical evening, some people are busy offering fresh lime juice to all. Capt. Padmanabhan bumps into Sunil Kumar, deputy general manager in charge of construction, introducing him as his “man Friday”.

“Friday?” asks Kumar quizzically.

“It means a man for all seasons.”

“Is that good or bad?” asks Kumar, as everyone around laughs off their work fatigue.

(With additional inputs from Dinakar Peri)

Aditya G
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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 15 Dec 2016

Postby Aditya G » 17 May 2017 01:59

This is my hope for ASW-SWC class ship:

1 x CRN-91: main gun
1 x AK-630: CWiz
1 x EON-51: Electro-optical sight
1 x IRL: ASW mortar with reloads.
1 x Tripe-Tube trainer launcher for LWT
HUMSA hull mounted sonar
towed sonar
Mareech torpedo decoy
Kavach decoy
water jet based propulsion mated to MTU diesels

Bheeshma
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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 15 Dec 2016

Postby Bheeshma » 17 May 2017 02:27

If its an ASW then why LWT? Go with 4X 533 mm tube for Heavy torpedo (like Abhay) and RBU-6000 and 2 AK-630 (Like Tarantuls) . I am not sure IN will accept 30 mm cannon instead of 76 mm gun for a 700 tonne corvette. Maybe they can use the old ones from retiring ships.I am not sure if it is possible but if it could have the DRDO TAS and like visby the ability to land a helicopter then it would be awesome ASW ship (no need of hangar).

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 15 Dec 2016

Postby Pratyush » 17 May 2017 07:48

The 2030 + date is a budgetary necessity I believe.

srai
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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 15 Dec 2016

Postby srai » 17 May 2017 07:57

Aditya G wrote:This is my hope for ASW-SWC class ship:

1 x CRN-91: main gun
1 x AK-630: CWiz
1 x EON-51: Electro-optical sight
1 x IRL: ASW mortar with reloads.
1 x Tripe-Tube trainer launcher for LWT
HUMSA hull mounted sonar
towed sonar
Mareech torpedo decoy
Kavach decoy
water jet based propulsion mated to MTU diesels


At 700t, these will be bigger than Abhay class (485t). You can expect the load out to be somewhat similar.
  • 1 x 76mm gun
  • 2 x AK-630
  • 2 × 533mm twin torpedo tubes
  • 1 x RBU-6000 (12 tubes w/ under deck auto-reload)

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 15 Dec 2016

Postby Bart S » 17 May 2017 08:43

arshyam wrote:Image


Do we make those giant propellers in India or do they have to be imported?

titash
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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 15 Dec 2016

Postby titash » 17 May 2017 09:25

srai wrote:
Aditya G wrote:This is my hope for ASW-SWC class ship:

1 x CRN-91: main gun
1 x AK-630: CWiz
1 x EON-51: Electro-optical sight
1 x IRL: ASW mortar with reloads.
1 x Tripe-Tube trainer launcher for LWT
HUMSA hull mounted sonar
towed sonar
Mareech torpedo decoy
Kavach decoy
water jet based propulsion mated to MTU diesels


At 700t, these will be bigger than Abhay class (485t). You can expect the load out to be somewhat similar.
  • 1 x 76mm gun
  • 2 x AK-630
  • 2 × 533mm twin torpedo tubes
  • 1 x RBU-6000 (12 tubes w/ under deck auto-reload)


Folks, the sensor/weapons specs had come out earlier:

(a) 2 triple lightweight torpedo tubes for close range ASW work in shallow water.

(b) 1 ASW rocket launcher (RBU-6000 hopefully, but deck-penetration may require only RBU-2500)

(c) Abhay hull mounted sonar:
Image

(d) Low Freq VDS (most likely using the new dipping sonar):
Image

No 76mm or 30mm cannon is to be fitted because these ships will operate very close to harbors and under shore based air cover. Just a couple of 12.7mm HMG to deal with smugglers. Also no helicopter because they're under 1000 tons.

Austere but effective fit for their primary job - shallow water ASW. Hence "Janata" class...raaste ka maal saste mein.

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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 15 Dec 2016

Postby Bheeshma » 17 May 2017 09:54

Can you post the link where the specs are given? I haven't seen any link that says LWT. At 650-700 tonne there is no point if it doesn't carry 533 mm tubes. The ASW corvette is supposed to operate as far as 200 nm(370 km) and I am pretty sure we have no shore based SAM to cover it at that range and we can't have an mig-29 shadowing these everywehere

srai
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Re: Indian Navy News & Discussion - 15 Dec 2016

Postby srai » 17 May 2017 09:58

titash wrote:
srai wrote:
At 700t, these [Janata class ASW] will be bigger than Abhay class (485t). You can expect the load out to be somewhat similar.
  • 1 x 76mm gun
  • 2 x AK-630
  • 2 × 533mm twin torpedo tubes
  • 1 x RBU-6000 (12 tubes w/ under deck auto-reload)


Folks, the sensor/weapons specs had come out earlier:

(a) 2 triple lightweight torpedo tubes for close range ASW work in shallow water.

(b) 1 ASW rocket launcher (RBU-6000 hopefully, but deck-penetration may require only RBU-2500)

...

No 76mm or 30mm cannon is to be fitted because these ships will operate very close to harbors and under shore based air cover. Just a couple of 12.7mm HMG to deal with smugglers. Also no helicopter because they're under 1000 tons.

...


For self-defense against anti-ship missiles, it would require a CIWS at the minimum.


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