STATES

IAC Vikrant sails for its third sea trials

By Express News Service

KOCHI:  The Indigenous Aircraft Carrier (IAC) Vikrant headed out for its third set of sea trials on Sunday lasting about two weeks to undertake complex manoeuvres to establish specific readings of how the warship performs under various conditions. 

Scientists from the Naval Science and Technological Laboratory, a DRDO laboratory based in Visakhapatnam, would also be embarked during the trials. In addition, various sensor suites of the ship would also be tested, an official release said here. 

The maiden sea trials in August last year saw the IAC establish propulsion, navigational suite, and basic operations and the second sea trial later in October-November witnessed the ship being put through its paces in terms of various machinery trials and flight trials.

The ship was out for 10 days proving its sustenance in the second sortie.  In its latest sea trials, the warship would operate a mix of MiG-29K fighter aircraft and various helicopters, ranging from the Kamov 31 Air Early Warning helicopters, the soon-to-be-inducted MH-60R multi-role helicopters, and the indigenously developed Advanced Light Helicopter Mk III. 

The third trials come after both President Ram Nath Kovind and Vice-President M Venkaiah Naidu, who reviewed the progress of the IAC during their recent visits to the Southern Naval Command headquarters in Kochi, conveyed their satisfaction and expressed their best wishes to all the stakeholders involved in the project. In its second sortie, various seamanship evolutions were successfully cleared. 

The IAC has been a success story on numerous counts. Be it the case of Atmanirbharta wherein 76% of the equipment is indigenously sourced or the close engagement between the design teams of the Indian Navy and Cochin Shipyard Limited – a high-point in the largest and most complex warship ever to be built in the country. “That the ship has been able to carry out basic flying operations from its very first sortie itself is a landmark in Indian warship construction history,” the release said. 

More trials 

  • The third trials come after both President Ram Nath Kovind and Vice-President M Venkaiah Naidu reviewed the progress of the IAC during their recent visits to the Southern Naval Command headquarters in Kochi
  • After the successful completion of a series of progressive sea trials, the ship is scheduled to be commissioned as INS Vikrant later this year, as the nation commemorates ‘Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav’.

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