Kamorta Project 28 ASW Corvette
The Indian Navy modernization program includes a new antisubmarine warfare corvette. By late December 2003, Garden Reach Shipbuilders and Engineers was developing a new corvette design that would follow the Kora-class, of which the fourth and final unit (Karmukh) was commissioned in 2004. The new corvette would displace about 2,400 tons full loaded, in the size-class of a modern frigate. With the design under development, plate-cutting started on the first unit in 2005 and up to eight units of the class could eventually be built.
The 2nd International Naval & Defence Show (IMDS-2005) held in St Petersburg provided new information on the Project 28 (P-28) ASW corvette to be designed and built by GSRE. The Russian Severnoye Design Bureau confirmed that the P-28 would be derived from from the Russian Project 20382 design. The platform was to be Russian, and most major systems would be Indian. But Contrary to earlier reports, this vessel is not an adaptation of the Russian Project 2038.0 (Steregushchy Class) design. Rather, the Indian Navy provided the basic design with a detail design by GRSE.
GRSE was slated to launch four ASW corvettes for the Indian Navy costing nearly Rs 1,700 crores apiece. Kamorta, the first in the series, was launched by Mrs Mamatha on 19 April 2010. Kamorta, after fitments, was expected to be delivered to the Indian Navy in June 2012 and Kadmatt in March 2013. The keel of the third ASW corvette, meanwhile, was laid in August 2010. The remaining two ASW corvettes scheduled to float out next from GRSE yards are Kilfan and Kavaratti.
By August 2011 the major indigenous warship building projects of the Navy running behind schedule are Project-15A, Project-17 and Project-28. The cost escalation in these projects had been about 225% for Project-15A, about 260% for Project-17 and about 157% for Project-28. In the case of P-28, the Navy was using D40S/B-quality high tensile strength steel for construction of warships; however, due to high cost of import, indigenously developed DMR 249A steel was decided to be used on P-28 ships. However, there was delay in development of indigenous steel and associated complexities related to development of new weld consumables and welding techniques. The delay in identification of suitable propulsion package to meet stealth requirement of ships and delay in development of indigenous weapons and sensors also resulted in cost escalation.
The Indian Navy’s modernization quest, under ‘Project-28’, to stealthily hunt and destroy lurking enemy submarines got further bolstered with the launch of the second indigenous anti-submarine warfare (ASW) corvette, Kadmatt, named after an island in the Lakshwadeep archipelago. It has been built by Garden Reach Shipbuilders & Engineers (GRSE) at Kolkata.
INS Kadmatt, the second indigenous stealth Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) Corvette was commissioned at Naval Dockyard, Visakhapatnam on 07 January 2016. The Navy took pride in the fact that “about 90% of the ship is indigenous.” This complies with the Navy’s objective and motto of ‘Make in India’. The ship had been designed by the Indian Navy’s in-house organisation, Directorate of Naval Design and constructed by Garden Reach Shipbuilders and Engineers Limited, Kolkata.
The third Anti Submarine Warfare (ASW) Corvette for the Indian Navy designed under Project-28 (P-28) by the Navy's Directorate of Naval Design, built by one of India's leading shipbuilders, Garden Reach Shipbuilders & Engineers Ltd. (GRSE), was launched in Kolkata. Named after an island - Kiltan - in the Lakshwadeep archipelago of India, the ASW Corvette was launched by Mrs Chitra Joshi from GRSE mainyard in the presence of Chief of the Naval Staff, Admiral DK Joshi, Chairman and Managing Director, GRSE, Rear Admiral (Retd) A K Verma and other officials from the Ministry of Defence, Armed Forces and West Bengal administration.
With nearly 90% indigenisation content aimed to be achieved in the manufacturing of the ship, the efforts made by Indian Navy and Defence Shipyards towards the national goal of indigenisation and self-reliance got a major impetus with this latest ASW Corvette launch.
The Indian Navy also got closer to acquiring the ASW platforms that would stealthily seek and destroy lurking enemy submarines as the first GRSE-built ASW Corvette, Kamorta, was expected to be delivered to Indian Navy in 2013. The remaining three ships, according to GRSE, would be delivered by 2016. The fourth ASW Corvette was to be launched in 2014. The navy would have four of these corvettes - Kamorta, Kadmat, Kiltan and Kavaratti.
INS Kiltan, the Anti Submarine Warfare Corvette of the Indian Navy, designed under Project-28, was launched on March 26, 2013. With nearly 90 percent indigenous content, the efforts made by Indian Navy and Defence Shipyards towards the national goal of indigenization and self-reliance got a major impetus with this latest ASW Corvette launch. By late 2012 the shipyard hopedi for launchers (without missiles) to be delivered soon, so that construction can continue. Construction of all 3 Kolkata class ships was largely complete by 2012, so once the Barak 8 came, all 3 should be commissioned. But the commissioning of a ship also requires training and orientation of her compliment and host of minor refinements which are done during commissioning trials. Also if some minor adjustment are required which are generic in nature then it can be applied to her follow on ships in the dockyard itself. So there would probably be a minimum of 6-months gap between commissioning of subsequent ships.
The effort to make surface-to-air missiles was aborted when the DRDO failed to deliver the Trishul. Having learned its lesson, the DRDO tied up with Israel, to design what is called the Barak 8 Long Range Surface to Air Missile (LRSAM). The Long Range Surface-to-Air Missile (LR-SAM) was originally slated to be complete by May 2011, but by early 2014 it had been delayed until December 2015. In the meanwhile some of the newer ships would have no SAM cover.
INS Kiltan (P30), third Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) stealth corvettes built under Project 28 (Kamorta Class) was commissioned into the Indian Navy by Hon’ble Raksha Mantri Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman at an impressive ceremony held at Naval Dockyard, Visakhapatnam on 16 October 2017. Regarded as a very prestigious acquisition, INS Kiltan is one of the most potent warships to have been constructed in India. The ship’s keel of was laid on 10 August 2010 and launched on 26 March 2013. Her maiden sea trials commenced on 06 May 2017 and finally was handed over to the Indian Navy by GRSE on 14 October 2017. The sleek and magnificent ship is propelled by ‘Combination of Diesel and Diesel (CODAD)’ propulsion system of four diesel engines to achieve speeds in excess of 25 knots and has an endurance of around 3,500 Nautical Miles. Admiral Sunil Lanba, the Chief of the Naval Staff, Vice Admiral HCS Bisht, Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief Eastern Naval Command, Rear Admiral VK Saxena (Retd), CMD, Garden Reach Shipbuilders & Engineers Limited, Kolkata (GRSE), Kolkata, Commodore MB Kunte (Retd) first Commanding Officer of erstwhile Kiltan and a host of other dignitaries were also present during the commissioning ceremony. The event marked the formal commissioning into the Navy of the third of the four ASW Corvettes, indigenously designed by the Indian Navy’s in-house organisation, Directorate of Naval Design and constructed by Garden Reach Shipbuilders & Engineers Limited, Kolkata.
During her address post commissioning of INS Kiltan, the Hon’ble Raksha Mantri, Smt Nirmala Sitharaman congratulated the Indian Navy, M/s. GRSE, other Indian PSUs and a host of small and medium scale industries, which have contributed towards building this fine ship. She emphasised that the Navy’s relentless pursuit of self-reliance through indigenisation is highly appreciable and this has helped the Indian Navy to seamlessly transform from a Buyer’s to a Builder’s Navy. She highlighted that the addition of INS Kiltan to the naval fleet is a reaffirmation of this transformation. She further exhorted that we need to benchmark our shipbuilding practices to international best practices and produce quality ships in a shorter time frame and at competitive costs. She further stated that the Government fully appreciates the nation’s defence requirements and requisite finances for the Armed Forces and Defence industry would be made available for the modernisation and development plans of the Navy.
INS Kavaratti, an Anti-Submarine Warfare stealth corvette was commissioned into the Indian Navy 22 October 2020 by Army Chief General Manoj Mukund Naravane at a ceremony held at Naval Dockyard, Visakhapatnam in Andhra Pradesh. The event marked the formal commissioning of the last of the four Anti-Submarine Warfare Corvettes into the Indian Navy. INS Kavaratti is an indigenously designed, Kamorta class Anti Submarine Warfare stealth Corvette built by the Garden Reach Shipbuilders and Engineers Limited.
Named after the capital of the Lakshadweep group of islands, INS Kavaratti has been constructed using high-grade DMR 249A steel produced in India and is one of the most potent Anti-Submarine Warships to have been constructed in the country. The ship’s advanced stealth features makes it less susceptible to detection by the enemy. Defence Ministry has informed that the unique feature of this ship is the high level of indigenisation incorporated in its production, accentuating the National Objective of ‘Atmanirbhar Bharat’. It also has the state of the art equipment and systems to fight in Nuclear, Biological and Chemical warfare conditions.
It said, the weapons and sensors suite onboard is also pre-dominantly indigenous and showcases the Nation’s evolving capability in the niche area. Some of the major equipment and systems developed indigenously include Combat Management System, Torpedo Tube Launchers and Infra-Red Signature Suppression System among others. After completing sea trials of all the equipments onboard, INS Kavaratti has been commissioned as a fully combat-ready platform providing a boost to the Anti Submarine Warfare capability of the Indian Navy. The ship will be an integral part of the Eastern Fleet under the Eastern Naval Command.
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