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Indian Navy Begins Sea Trials Of Russian-Built Aircraft Carrier

Discussion in 'Indian Navy' started by Manmohan Yadav, Jun 9, 2012.

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  1. Manmohan Yadav

    Manmohan Yadav Brigadier STAR MEMBER

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    The Indian Navy's Russian-built aircraft carrier Vikramaditya (formerly Admiral Gorshkov) began sea trials early on Friday morning in the White Sea - four years after it was originally due to take to sea again. The ship was refitted at the Sevmash shipyard in northern Russia. It was originally scheduled to begin sea trials, which will last 120 days, on May 25.

    Refitted at the Sevmash shipyard in northern Russia, the ship is carrying a mixed Russian-Indian crew is on board the vessel, with the Indian sailors learning how to operate the vessel.

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    The ship will sail to the Barents Sea for exercises with the military aircraft after sea trial in the White Sea have been concluded.

    The purchase of the carried was signed in 2005 for an estimated $947 million but delivery has been delayed twice thus taking the refurbishing cost up to $2.3 billion.

    India has already begun inducting MiG-29K naval fighter aircraft for the Russian-made carrier which has a displacement of 45,000 tons, a maximum speed of 32 knots and an endurance of 13,500 nautical miles (25,000 km) at a cruising speed of 18 knots.

    The MiG-29K was reportedly selected over the larger and more-capable Su-33 naval fighter because India also hopes to operate them from its smaller, indigenous “Project-71 Air Defense Shipâ€￾ carriers.
     
  2. Manmohan Yadav

    Manmohan Yadav Brigadier STAR MEMBER

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    Indian Carrier Begins Sea Trials

    The refurbished aircraft carrier Vikramaditya reportedly began its long-delayed sea trials June 8, leaving its Sevmash shipyard in northern Russia and heading for the White Sea.

    The Russian news agency RIA Novosti reported the ship, with a mixed Russian-Indian crew, was underway after a series of delays and postponements.

    Once planned for delivery to India in 2008, the carrier, formerly the Russian Navy’s Admiral Gorshkov, overcame its latest delay after the shipbuilders said in mid-May they were aiming for a May 25 trials date. According to the Sevmash website, an inclining experiment to measure the ship’s stability was carried out shortly before the sea trials.

    If no further delays are encountered, the ship is expected to be delivered to the Indian Navy in December.

    According to RIA Novosti, a trials program of 120 days has been scheduled. After sea trials in the White Sea, the Vikramaditya is to move to the Barents Sea for trials with aircraft.

    The Cold War-era ship was built in Ukraine for the old Soviet Navy and first commissioned in 1987 after nine years of construction. Known as Project 1143.4, the ship was a modified version of the Soviet Navy’s Kiev-class aircraft carrier, and featured an angled flight deck operating vertical or-short-takeoff-and-landing jet aircraft and helicopters. The forward deck was originally covered with missile launchers.

    But after a $2.3 billion conversion at Sevmash — originally contracted in 2005 for $943 million — the ship now sports a full flight deck tipped by a ski-jump, allowing aircraft to take off without needing catapults. The rebuilt Vikramaditya displaces 45,400 tons, has an overall length of 928 feet with a beam over the flight deck of 167 feet.

    India plans to operate navalized MiG-29K fighters from the Vikramaditya, a major jump in capability from the Sea Harriers now flying from the much smaller Viraat, India’s only operational carrier.

    India is also building the first of a new class of aircraft carrier at Cochin Shipyard in Kochi. The first Project 71 ship, expected to be named Vikrant, was floated out in December.
     
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