#DefenseDiaries: Kolkata-class destroyers allows India to project powerLast updated on Dec 06, 2017, 01:05 am
The three Kolkata-class destroyers are among the five most powerful weapons of the Indian Navy (IN).
The INS Kolkata, first commissioned in 2014, and her sister ships INS Kochi and INS Chennai, are India's first indigenously designed and domestically-built modern stealth destroyers.
The warships, which are armed with deadly weapons and sophisticated sensors, greatly increase the IN's power projection capability.
Here's all about them.
Kolkata-class destroyers are a successor to Delhi-class
In 2000, the Indian government approved the construction of three Project-15A Kolkata-class destroyers, the stealthy and upgraded versions of the three formidable Project-15 Delhi-class destroyers.
The Kolkata-class destroyers were designed by Directorate of Naval Design and constructed at Mazgaon Dock Limited (MDL).
The warships were commissioned four-years late due to design changes and delays in delivery of weapons systems and other crucial components.
Warships have space for upgrades
The three Kolkata-Class destroyers displace around 7,500 tons and have a 163-meter long hull, retained from their predecessors. The warships' shape and designs incorporate stealth characteristics. Designers have left a lot of deck space for future upgrades and additions.
Kolkata-class destroyer have one of the world's most-advanced radars
The Kolkata-class destroyers are India's first warships to feature the highly-advanced Active Electronically Scanned Array (AESA) radar.
The multi-function S-band Israeli MF-STAR radar replaces nearly a dozen smaller search, track and fire control radars.
The MF-STAR radar is believed to be capable of guiding 24 surface-to-air missiles to protect the warship from saturation air attacks.
A secondary Thales LW-08 2D radar provides long-range surveillance.
Warships are armed with deadly supersonic BrahMos missiles
The Kolkata-class destroyers carry 16 vertically-launched BrahMos supersonic long-range anti-ship and anti-surface cruise missiles which have a range of 300-km.
For secondary warfare, the warship is equipped with a 76mm Oto Melara which can target surface targets 15km away and aerial targets 8-km away.
It also features two twin 533 mm torpedo tubes and two RBU-6000 rocket launchers for anti-submarine warfare.
Kolkata-class destroyers carry 32 advanced surface-to-air missiles
The Kolkata-class destroyers carry 32 Barak-8 long-range surface-to-air missiles (SAM) co-developed by India and Israel.
These are not sufficient for saturated missile attacks but the warships have enough space to add another 32 SAMs.
Barak-8 missiles can intercept warplanes and incoming missiles up to 90-km away.
The warships possess four AK-630 6-barreled guns as close-in weapon systems as the second-layer defense against incoming missiles.
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Warships can carry up to two helicopters
The Kolkata-class destroyers feature a flight deck with an enclosed hangar that can hold up to two helicopters, such as the AgustaWestland Sea King helicopter or the indigenously developed HAL Dhruv helicopter.
Kolkata-class destroyers unlock India's blue-water navy capability
With their diverse armament and sophisticated array of sensors, the Kolkata-class destroyers can conduct multiple roles, including anti-ship, anti-surface, anti-ship or anti-submarine warfare.
A single long-range Kolkata-class destroyer is capable of projecting India's power far from its coast, turning the IN into a truly blue-water navy.
The Kolkata-class is a precursor to the upgraded, under-construction and deadlier Vishakhapatnam-class stealth destroyers.