IAC 'Vikrant' returns after successfully completing five-day maiden sea voyage

By Express News Service

KOCHI: Indigenous Aircraft Carrier (IAC) ‘Vikrant’ on Sunday successfully completed its maiden sea voyage for which she had sailed on Wednesday from Kochi.  

“Trials progressed as planned and system parameters proved satisfactory. The carrier would continue to undergo series of sea trials to prove all equipment and systems prior to handing over the vessel to the Indian Navy,” an official statement by the Southern Naval Command said here.

Trials were reviewed by Vice Admiral AK Chawla, Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief Southern Naval Command on the last day, and have progressed as planned and system parameters have been proved satisfactory. 

“The successful completion of maiden trials sorties, despite challenges faced due to Covid19 pandemic and COVID protocols in place, is testimony to the dedicated efforts of large number of stakeholders for over a decade. This is a major milestone activity and historical event. The carrier would undergo a series of Sea Trials to prove all equipment and systems prior to its delivery in 2022,” it said.

Indigenous Aircraft Carrier ‘Vikrant’ designed by the Indian Navy’s Directorate of Naval Design (DND) was built at the Cochin Shipyard Limited (CSL), a public sector shipyard under the Ministry of Shipping (MoS). 

Indigenous Aircraft Carrier (IAC) ‘Vikrant’ successfully accomplished maiden sea voyage today.Trials progressed as planned.A true testimony by #IndianNavy towards #AtmanirbharBharat & #MakeinIndia initiative (1/n).@cslcochin @SpokespersonMoD @DefenceMinIndia @shipmin_india pic.twitter.com/ytV8IpW7ui
— SpokespersonNavy (@indiannavy) August 8, 2021
Madhu S Nair, the chairman and managing director of CSL said the maiden sea trial of the vessel was a complete success. “We have tested all the parameters set for the trial. Our focus is on completion of the rest of the sea trials and delivering the vessel to the Indian Navy next year,” Nair said, adding that the maiden sea trial will be a “mammoth confidence booster” to the entire team.

The South Naval Command said IAC is a leading example of the nation’s quest for ‘Atma Nirbhar Bharat’ and the Indian Navy’s ‘Make in India’ initiative, with more than 76% indigenous content.  

The Indigenous Aircraft Carrier is 262 m long, 62 m at the widest part and a height of 59 m including the superstructure. There are 14 decks in all, including five in the superstructure. The ship has over 2,300 compartments, designed for a crew of around 1700 people, having gender-sensitive accommodation spaces for women officers.  The ship with a high degree of automation for machinery operation, ship navigation and survivability, has been designed to accommodate an assortment of fixed-wing and rotary aircraft.

During the maiden sailing, the ship’s performance, including hull, main propulsion, Power Generation and Distribution (PGD) and auxiliary equipment were tested.

Delivery of Vikrant is being targeted to coincide with celebrations to commemorate the 75th anniversary of India’s independence ‘Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav’.   

With the delivery of IAC, India would join a select group of nations with the capability to indigenously design and build an Aircraft Carrier and provides thrust to Government’s ‘Make in India’ initiative. Delivery of IAC would also strengthen India’s position in the Indian Ocean Region (IOR) and its quest for a blue water Navy.