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Piyush Jain asked: What is the current status of INS Vikrant and INS Vishal?

Abhay Kumar Singh replies: India’s first indigenous aircraft carrier is likely to be commissioned as INS Vikrant in 2020. Initially conceived as P-71 ADS (Project 71 Air Defence Ship) in 1999, it was later given a project designation of IAC-1 (Indigenous Aircraft Carrier). The ship is 262 metres in length and has a displacement of 37000 tonnes. The ship features STOBAR (Short Take Off, Barrier Arrested Recovery) with a ski jump and can deploy up to 30 MIG 29K fighter aircraft. The preparation for the construction of the ship commenced in 2008 at Cochin Shipyard and the keel was laid in 2009. The ship was launched in 2013 and is presently undergoing outfitting process of equipment installation which include machinery, sensors and Aviation Facilities Complex. On completion of integration trials in harbour, the ship is likely to commence sea trials by May-June 2020 and will be commissioned by the end of 2020.

India’s second indigenous aircraft carrier (IAC-2), INS Vishal, is still awaiting approval of the government. The project is yet to be listed in the annual acquisition plan of the Indian Navy. The broad specification of IAC-2 was outlined in the Request for Proposal (RFP) floated by the Indian Navy in 2015. As per RFP, IAC-2 will have a displacement of 65000 tonnes and 300 metres length. The ship is planned to be equipped with CATOBAR (Catapult Take Off, Barrier Arrested Recovery) and will embark 30-35 fixed wing combat aircraft, and about 20 helicopters.

Posted on May 29, 2018