Saturday, August 10, 2013

INS Arihant - reactor active, running on nuclear power now

In a major step towards completing its nuclear triad, the atomic reactor on-board the indigenous nuclear submarine INS Arihant was activated late Friday night and the submarine is on its own power now. The submarine will soon be launched to sea on the Eastern coast for extensive sea trials

DRDO has also readied a medium-range nuclear missile BO-5 for being deployed on the Arihant and its last developmental trial was held on January 27 off the coast of Vishakhapatnam.

INS Arihant, till now, was being tested in the harbor on shore-based, high-pressure steam. With the reactor going critical now, the submarine will eventually head for open waters for extensive "sea- acceptance trials", which will include firing of its 750-km range K-15 ballistic missiles. 

INS Arihant at launch ceremony ( Image Courtesy - ) 

The sea trials will take at least another 18 months before INS Arihant can become fully operational. It will be the first ballistic missile submarine to have been built outside the five recognized nuclear powers — the United States, France, Russia, Britain and China.

Sections of a second submarine, to be named Aridaman are already at an advanced stage of outfitting at the Ship Building Centre (SBC). Sources indicate Aridaman could be launched by next year. Sections of a third submarine are also under construction at the Larsen & Toubro's Hazira facility. The three SSBNs have been under construction under a secret navy-DRDO-Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC) project called the 'Advanced Technology Vessel' (ATV) project. 

India's strategic plans call for a fleet of five nuclear powered attack submarines (SSN) and five ballistic missile submarines (SSBN).

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Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Japan unveils its new aircraft carrier - Izumo

Japan on Tuesday unveiled its biggest warship since World War II, a huge flat-top destroyer that has raised eyebrows in China and elsewhere because it bears a strong resemblance to a conventional aircraft carrier.

The 250 metre vessel, named 'Izumo', is officially labelled as a destroyer, although its flat top can functions as a flight deck like that on an aircraft carrier.

Unveiling ceremony of JMSDF Izumo ( Image Courtesy - 

The ship, which has a flight deck that is nearly 820 feet long, is designed to carry up to 14 helicopters. Japanese officials say it will be used in national defense -- particularly in anti-submarine warfare and border-area surveillance missions -- and to bolster the nation's ability to transport personnel and supplies in response to large-scale natural disasters, like the devastating earthquake and tsunami in 2011.

Unveiling ceremony of JMSDF Izumo ( Image Courtesy - ) 

Though technically a destroyer, some experts believe the new Japanese ship could potentially be used in the future to launch fighter jets or other aircraft that have the ability to take off vertically. That would be a departure for Japan, which has one of the best equipped and best trained naval forces in the Pacific but which has not sought to build aircraft carriers of its own because of constitutional restrictions that limit its military forces to a defensive role.

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Friday, August 2, 2013

INS Vikrant to be launched on August 12

India will launch its first indigenous aircraft carrier, INS Vikrant, on August 12 from the Kochi shipyard. This will make India only the fifth country after the US, Russia, Britain and France to have the capability to build such vessels.

"About 83 per cent of the fabrication work and 75 per cent of the construction work will be over when the ship goes into water," said Indian Navy's vice chief, Admiral Robin Dhowan.

The rest of the work, including the flight deck, will be completed once the ship is launched, the Navy vice chief said. The aircraft carrier is expected to be inducted into the Indian Navy by 2018.

INS Vikrant under construction ( Image Courtesy - )

Admiral Dhowan also said that the 40,000 tonne indigenous aircraft carrier is one of its most prestigious warship projects and unprecedented in terms of size and complexity. It has been designed by Indian Navy's design organisation.

INS Vikrant will have two take-off runways and a landing strip with three arrester wires capable of operating a STOBAR (Short Take Off But Arrested Recovery). The main stay fighters positioned on board would be Russian made MiG -29k fighter jets. The naval variant of the Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) produced by India is also scheduled to be positioned on the warship. However, it would depend on how quickly and effectively Navy variant of the LCA is produced and cleared for active duty.

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