An IDC Report


New Delhi, 27 March 2005

There was joy in Naval Aviation circles as the Indian Navy announced the full details of its Carrier programme, earlier called by the misnomer Air Defence Ship (ADS) to keep the IAF and Government happy. Government sanctioned the design and construction of an indigenous Air Defence Ship in Jan 2003 at a cost of Rs. 3261 crores. This was the most prestigious project, which the Indian Navy had taken up so far. The design and construction of an aircraft carrier is a technical complexity whose dimensions far outstrip any such challenge faced hitherto by the Indian Navy. Only three other nations have built such a large carrier in the past. The carrier with a deep displacement of 37,500 T is being designed to operate a mix of 12 MiG-29K, 8 LCA/Sea Harrier, 10 ALH and Ka31 aircraft. The ship will be built at Cochin Shipyard Ltd, Kochi. Over Rs. 200 crs from the naval budget have been provided for augmentation of infrastructure facilities to enable CSL to execute the ADS order. It was envisaged that the yard would incur an expenditure to the tune of Rs. 500 crs. a year to be able to deliver ADS on schedule.

General Features

The ship has a length of 252 m, breadth of 58 m, draft of 8.4 m, depth of 25.6 m and a deep displacement of 37,500 tonnes. The ship will be propelled by four GE LM2500 Gas Turbines same as the Type 17, generating a total power of 80 MW (1,20,000 HP approx.) thereby enabling the ship to do a maximum speed of 28 knots. The ship will have an endurance of 7,500 NM at 18 knots and the logistics endurance of 45 days. The ship will have a complement of 1560 i.e. 1400 sailors and 160 officers. It can carry a maximum of 30 aircrafts and 17 of these can be accommodated in the hangar. The air operations can take place up to sea state 5. The ship will have two runways, one with ski jump and a landing strip with 3 arrester wires.


Design of this prestigious ship is being undertaken by the Navy’s own Design Bureau at Kailash Colony in New Delhi under Cmde MK Badhwar and Cdr Kushawa as the main elements besides their strong team. The preliminary design has already been completed and the work related to detailed design is in hand. Production drawings for approximately 5000 tonnes of steel work are already available in the yard. The ship will be built using IHOP (Integrated Hull Outfit and Painting) method and modular construction for which GODREJ, STACO of Korea and a firm from Dubai are in competition. The ship will be constructed using high strength ABA grade steel developed in house between DRDO and SAIL. About 456 tonnes of steel has already been received in the yard from Russia and Bhillai. The ADS will require about 20,000 tonnes of steel. 


Leading Italian ship design and construction yard M/s Fincantieri has been selected by CSL to assist them in integrating the main propulsion system, making the main engine room layouts and for preparation of the Build Specifications for the ship. The inputs in respect of MiG-29 K will be provided by the Russians who will also assist in the associated design work for aviation facilities such as Flight Deck, Hangar, Aircrafts Lifts, Ammunition Lifts, Aircraft Launch & Recovery systems etc. 

Major Project Milestones

The steel cutting of ADS is scheduled to begin on 11 Apr 05 and the Hon’ble Raksha Mantri will be the chief guest for the ceremony. The keel of the ship is to be laid in Oct 07 with lowering of pre-outfitted engine room blocks into the Building Dock at CSL. The ship after construction and trials is scheduled for delivery in 2012.

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