India

INS Kalvari commences sea trials, induction in Sept

2 May 2016 | By Achin Garg

INS Kalvari, the first of the 6 Scorpene class submarines, has started sea trials on Sunday, 1st of May.

Numerous preliminary tests on propulsion systems, navigation aid, communication equipment, steering gear, auxiliary systems, etc. were carried out.

The sea trials carried out in the Arabian sea are a follow-up to the harbour trials.

The submarine will be inducted into the navy by September 2016.

In context: India's Scorpene class submarines

India joins exclusive submarine manufacturers club

India had joined the elite group of nations capable of manufacturing submarines in 1992 when it rolled out INS Shalki, which was manufactured at Mazagon Docks Limited, Mumbai, and is still in service with the navy.

About What is INS Kalvari?

The 66-metre-long INS Kalvari is a Scorpene diesel-electric attack submarine, manufactured at the Mazagon Dockyard Ltd (MDL) in Mumbai.

INS Kalvari is a part of the $3.6 billion contract to manufacture 6 submarines with French firm DCNS that was signed in October 2005.

4 of the 6 submarines will be conventional submarines while 2 will be equipped with Air Independent Propulsion (AIP) Systems.

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What is AIP system?

Air Independent Propulsion (AIP) system is a technology that allows diesel-electric submarines to stay underwater longer than conventional submarines as they do not have to resurface or use a snorkel frequently for obtaining atmospheric oxygen.

Background A brief history of the 6 submarine project

The Scorpene class submarines were finalised in 2005, after a need was felt due to the dwindling number of submarines in the navy.

The submarines were to be manufactured in Mazagaon Dock Ltd (MDL) under transfer of technology from France.

The construction of the first of the six submarines started in 2009 after delays and the 1st submarine was ready only in 2015.

25 Dec 2015Alarmingly low number of submarines in India

According to Defence Minister, Manohar Parrikar, the Indian Navy has commissioned only 2 submarines and de-commissioned 5 over the last 15 years.

India is now left with only 14 submarines, half of which have crossed 3/4th of their operational life, compared to China which has 68 submarines.

The Parliamentary Standing Committee on Defence had expressed dismay at the "snail pace" of commissioning naval vessels.

2 May 2016INS Kalvari commences sea trials, induction in Sept

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Timely induction to revitalize navy's strength

After the induction of INS Kalvari in Sept'16, Navy plans to induct the remaining 5 submarines at a rate of one submarine every 9 months. This is expected to plug some gap in Indian Navy's submarines strength.

30 May 2016Scorpenes to become Navy's backbone

In a few years, the French Scorpene class submarines will replace the Russian Kilo class submarines as the mainstay of the Indian Navy.

Six scorpenes are under construction at the Mazgaon Docks in Mumbai and the ship builder has inaugurated another assembly workshop which may see 6 more submarines.

Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar, who inaugurated the facility, said the focus was to increase indigenisation.

18 Sep 2016Scorpene leak originated in France: Navy

The Indian Navy has stated that the leak of data, compromising security features of the Scorpene class submarines, originated in France at the manufacturer DCNS's end.

The Chief of Naval Staff Sunil Lamba made the statements while clarifying that high-level probes were underway in India and France and appropriate action would be taken.

He added that other deals with France were not suspended.

02 Mar 2017Submarine INS Kalvari successfully fires anti-ship missile

The Indian Navy has successfully launched an anti-ship missile from the new INS Kalvari, the first of the Scorpene-class submarines.

The missile successfully hit a surface target at extended ranges in the Arabian Sea during the trial firing, marking a significant milestone for the submarine, bringing it one step closer to being formally commissioned.

The INS Kalvari is currently undergoing sea trials.