New Delhi: India’s first indigenous aircraft carrier (IAC) Vikrant has commenced sailing on Wednesday for crucial sea trials ahead of its planned induction into the Indian Navy next year.
IAC is a leading example of the nation’s quest for “Atma Nirbhar Bharat” with more than 76 per cent indigenous content. The Indigenous Aircraft Carrier is 262 m long, 62 m at the widest part and height of 59 m including the superstructure.
There are 14 decks in all, including five in the superstructure. The ship has over 2,300 compartments, designed for a crew of around 1700 people, including specialised cabins to accommodate women officers.
The ship has been designed with a very high degree of automation for machinery operation, ship navigation and survivability, ‘Vikrant’ has a top speed of around 28 knots and cruising speed of 18 knots with an endurance of about 7,500 nautical miles. The ship can accommodate an assortment of fixed wing and rotary aircraft.
Readiness of ship’s Propulsion and Power Generation equipment/ systems was tested in harbour as part of Basin Trials in November 2020. About two month back, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh had reviewed the progress of construction of the Carrier.
Though the commencement of Sea Trials was delayed due to the 2nd wave of COVID, with concentrated and dedicated efforts of large number of workmen, OEMs, engineers, overseers, inspectors, designers and the ship’s crew, who had put their heart and soul towards the ship’s readiness for sea trials.
This is a major milestone activity and historical event. With the delivery of IAC, India would join a select group of nations with the capability to indigenously design and build an Aircraft Carrier, which will be a real testimony to the ‘Make in India’ thrust of the Indian Government.
Indian Navy’s ship building programme is rightly poised to provide requisite ‘Economic Stimulus’, with 44 ships & submarines on order being built indigenously.