INS Beas Commissioned 

An IDC Analysis


New Delhi, 13 July 2005 

INS BEAS commissioned on 11 July 2005

INS Beas, the latest guided missile frigate built by Garden Reach Shipbuilders and Engineers, Kolkata, was commissioned on 11 Jul 05 by the Chief of the Naval Staff, Admiral Arun Prakash. The lead ship of the Type 16A class INS Bramahputra took over 11 years in construction at GRSE and now INS Beas has taken over 5 years to build, with massive cost escalation, calculated by the cost plus system adopted for naval contracts with the PSUs.

In the photograph above, professionals may recognize that the EL/M-2238 STAR radar (for the BARAK) has replaced the Signaal DW-08 radar installed on the Brahmaputra and Betwa. The IN has been shifting the Barak system from ship to ship and recently INS Ganga carried out some very successful firings. Ganga and INS Viraat have the Barak as the long awaited DRDO built Trishul did not materialize in time. However the DRDO is conducting trials to prove the Trishul. The Barak radar appears below the Ajanta Mk3 ESM mast.

'The BEAS', is a steam driven 3600 tonne warship, 125 metres in length, with a draught of 4.5 metres. The platform has weapons like Barak Anti Missile Defence system, four quad-packs of the URAN 16 surface-to-surface missile, a medium range 76 mm Super Rapid Oto Melara Gun Mount, four Close range 30mm AK 630 Guns, two Triple tube Torpedo launchers for WASS A 244 S, BEL supplied HUMAS Sonar and the BEL/DRDO made Ellora Electronic Warfare suite. A ecent news report suggested that Whitehead of Italy (now a part of Finmeccanica) were to make light weight torpedoes with BDL ( perhaps the MU 90 the later version of the A 244S), and we wonder whatever happened to the DRDO/DSTL light weight torpedo? The Beas has an advanced computerised Action Information system for Command and Control of all weapons, (possibly the EMKA designed with copies of IPN 10 and inputs from WEESE) the Indian Navy’s captive software house. The ship is propelled by two 15,000 BHP steam turbines and is capable of speeds in excess of 30 knots.

'BEAS' is the third of the series of the 'P-16A' class built by GRSE. The ship, like her predecessors Brahmaputra and Betwa, has been fitted with a sophisticated indigenous weapon and sensor suite to enhance the Indian Navy's future combat capability. The commissioning of this ship reinforces the Navy's sustained commitment to indigenisation and reflects the technological strides made by the Indian shipbuilding and support Industry. If the Scorpenes are ordered as the French have buckled to play to the Congress Government demands, there will be greater impetus for Indian companies.

The ship was designed by the Director General Naval Design, at Naval Headquarters and is yet another addition to the series of successful projects like the 'Delhi' class destroyers, 'Godavari' class frigates and the 'Kora' class corvettes, which have gained worldwide recognition over the years. Presently, the Design organisation of the Navy is involved in design and production of five major projects including the Project 71 Indigenous Aircraft Carrier, the P-17 Shivalik Stealth Frigates, Gas Turbine Frigates of P-15A class and the Project 28 ASW Corvettes.

The majority of the Weapon Fire Control Systems, Sonar, Electronic Warfare, Navigational and Communication suites onboard the 'BEAS', have been supplied by PSUs like BEL/ECIL/HAL/ Keltron. The Propulsion turbines, Turbo Alternators, Diesel Alternators and Steam Auxiliaries were manufactured indigenously by BHE, HAL and a number of private sector firms. The Indian industry has amply demonstrated its technological prowess and capability in building state-of-the-art equipment conforming to stringent defence standards and which are capable of withstanding the extremely hostile marine environment.

The 'BEAS' was first commissioned under the command of Captain B R Kapoor in UK and brings back nostalgic memories of its earlier incarnation, which saw over 32 years of glorious service in the Indian Navy from 24 May 1960 to 23 Dec 1992, during which she covered herself with glory. During this period, Beas earned the unique distinction of having been in the thick of all the war campaigns that the Indian Navy had been involved in, post Independence. The first 'BEAS' was a 'Leopard' class frigate built by M/s Vickers Armstrong, Newcastle-upon-Tyne in the UK. The new 'BEAS' signifies the coming of age of the indigenous shipbuilding industry in the Indian Navy's goal of becoming a builders Navy.

We wish the Commanding Officer Capt Jamwal and his crew a very happy Commission.

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