On December 20, 2022, the fifth Scorpene-class conventional submarine, “Vagir” (S25), of “Project 75”, Kalvari Class submarines, Yard 11879, was delivered to the Indian Navy by Mazagon Dock Shipbuilders Limited (MDL) Mumbai, Maharashtra.
- It will be commissioned into the Indian Navy in January 2023 as “Indian Naval Ship (INS) Vagir,” a fully combat-worthy submarine capable of operation in all modes and deployment regimes.
This would enhance the Indian Navy’s combat capability at a time when China is strengthening its presence in the Indian Ocean region (IOR).
i.Six Scorpene-class submarines are to be built indigenously under Project-75.
- These submarines are being built at MDL Mumbai as a part of a USD 3.75 billion contract signed in October 2005 with the Naval Group of France.
ii.The first submarine, “INS Kalvari,” was commissioned in December 2017, followed by 2nd submarine “INS Khanderi“ in September 2019, 3rd submarine “INS Karanj” in March 2021, and 4th submarine “INS Vela” in November 2021.
- “Vagsheer,” the 6th and last Scorpène-class submarine, was launched into the water in April 2022 and is scheduled to be delivered to the Indian Navy by the end of 2023.
iii.The outstanding stealth features of Scorpene submarines include improved acoustic absorption techniques, low radiated noise levels, a hydro-dynamically optimised design, and the ability to deliver a crushing attack on the enemy utilising precision guided weapons.
Note: Similarly, the tender for six more advanced conventional submarines under ‘Project 75I’ is in the Request for Proposal (RFP) stage.
i.Vagir was launched into the water on November 12, 2020, and began sea trials on February 1, 2022.
- In comparison to earlier submarines, it has completed all major trials, including the weapon and sensor trials, in the shortest period of time.
ii.It has a length of 67.5 m (221 ft 5 in), a height of 12.3 m (40 ft 4 in), overall beam of 6.2 m (20 ft 4 in) and a draught of 5.8 m (19 ft 0 in). With the top speed of 20 knots (37 km/h; 23 mph) when submerged and a maximum speed of 11 knots (20 km/h; 13 mph) when surfaced.
iii.The submarine has a range of 6,500 nautical miles (12,000 km; 7,500 mi) at 8 knots (15 km/h; 9.2 mph) when surfaced. Each ship is powered by four MTU 12V 396 SE84 diesel engines, has 360 battery cells (750 kg, 1,650 lb each), for power and has a silent Permanently Magnetised Propulsion Motor.
iv.Each submarine has 60 km (37 mi) of cabling and 11 km (6.8 mi) of piping.
v.This class is equipped with six 533 mm (21 in) torpedo tubes for a combination of 18 heavyweight wire-guided German-made Surface and Underwater Target (SUT) torpedoes and SM39 Exocet anti-ship missiles or 30 mines in place of both.
vi.The class is also fitted with mobile C303/S anti-torpedo decoys for self-defense. The weapon systems and sensors are integrated with Submarine Tactical Integrated Combat System (SUBTICS).
vii.It’s sonar system is capable of Low-Frequency Analysis and Ranging (LOFAR) enabling long-range detection and classification. Each submarine has a complement of 8 officers and 35 sailors.
viii.“Vagir” is designed to perform a wide range of tasks, including anti-surface, anti-submarine, intelligence gathering, mine laying, area surveillance, operate in numerous theatres of operation, and demonstrate interoperability with other members of the Naval Task Force.
ix.The construction of these submarines at an Indian yard is another step toward Aatmanirbhar Bharat.
- This submarine is the third to be handed to the Indian Navy in the last 24 months.
Recent Developments in The Indian Navy:
i.The Indian Navy currently operates 15 conventional and one nuclear submarine.
- It consists of the indigenous nuclear ballistic missile submarine “INS Arihant,” which is India’s first indigenous nuclear Ballistic Missile Submarine (SSBN—Submersible Ship Ballistic Missile Nuclear), 4 German HDW submarines, 7 Russian Kilo-class submarines, and 4 Scorpene-class submarines.
ii.The Indian Navy intends to install Air Independent Propulsion (AIP) modules on all Scorpene submarines in order to increase their endurance.
- The Defense Research and Development Organization (DRDO) is in the process of developing an indigenous AIP module.
Recent Related News:
In November 2022, two warships from India, the INS Shivalik, a multi-role guided missile stealth frigate, and the INS Kamorta, an anti-submarine corvette, along with P-8I long-range maritime reconnaissance and anti-submarine warfare aircraft, and MARCOS (Marine Commandos) took part in the 26th Malabar Naval Exercise held in Yokosuka, Japan.
About the Indian Navy:
Chief of Naval Staff (CNS) – Admiral Radhakrishnan Hari Kumar
Founded – January 26, 1950
Headquarters – New Delhi, Delhi