#DefenseDiaries: Navy's razor sharp Talwar-class frigates cut through the seas
Two out of the Indian Navy's six Talwar-class guided missile frigates, INS Teg and INS Trikand, will be making a friendly port call at the UAE. The Russian-built Talwar-class frigates, first commissioned by the IN in 2003, are among India's most versatile and heavily-armed warships. They are capable of conducting anti-ship, anti-submarine, and anti-air operations. Here's all about them.
How India got the Talwar-class frigates
In 1997, India signed a $1 billion contract with Russia for the procurement of three modified Krivak III-class frigates. India commissioned these vessels, christened INS Talwar, INS Trishul and INS Tabar from 2003 to 2004. In 2006, India placed a $1.5 billion order for three additional warships Talwar-class frigates. The INS Teg, INS Tarkash, and INS Trikand were commissioned in from 2012 to 2013.
Talwar-class frigates are India's first stealth warships
Russia's Severnoye Design Bureau has designed the 4,000-ton Talwar-class frigates. The warships are among India's first to incorporate stealth technology. Their hull sections and topside were redesigned from the original Krivak III-class vessels to reduce their radar cross-section, electromagnetic, acoustic and infrared signatures.
Frigates are armed to the teeth
The first three warships of this class are armed with eight 220km-ranged 3M-54E Klub-N anti-ship cruise missiles. The second three feature eight 300km-ranged BrahMos supersonic cruise missiles. The warships possess with two twin 533 mm torpedo tubes and an RBU-6000 rocket launcher for anti-submarine warfare. They also come with an AK-190 main gun which can fire 100mm shells till a distance of 15.2km.
Frigates can carry one helicopter
The Talwar-class frigates also come with a helicopter deck and hangar to allow one chopper to operate from it. The IN's Ka-28 Helix-A anti-submarine warfare, Ka-31 Helix-B airborne early warning or HAL Dhruv's naval variant can operate from the warship.
Warships have a formidable self-defense suite
The warships have 24 Shtil-1 medium surface-to-air missiles meant to intercept enemy warplanes and missiles till a distance of 45km. The Talwar-class warships possess two Kashtan Air Defence close-in weapon systems (CIWS), as the second-layer defense against incoming missiles. The CIWS comprises of two GSh-30k 30mm Gatling guns and two SA-N-11 surface-to-air missile clusters.
Impressed Navy ordered four advanced Talwar-class frigates
The Talwar-class frigates remain India's frontline warships. They have served with distinction during naval operations sailing steadfastly to protect our seas. They have proven their mettle during anti-piracy missions and in joint exercises with foreign navies. In fact, the IN has been so impressed with them that it has ordered four additional upgraded Talwar-class warships of the Krivak IV-class from Russia in 2016.