Cochin Shipyard Limited (CSL) undocked its first indigenously-built aircraft carrier, INS Vikrant, at a simple ceremony at the yard on Wednesday.
The ship, built at CSL, will undergo a series of fitment and trial processes before it is ready for propulsion and inducted into the Navy, CSL officials said. It may take two-three years for the commissioning of the aircraft carrier.
The building of the ship started at the yard roughly five years back and the keel laying and cutting of steel were done in February 2009.
The successful completion of the 40,000 tonne aircraft carrier puts India in the elite group of four nations - the US, Russia, the UK and France - in the world capable of designing and constructing aircraft carriers.
The basic design of the indigenous aircraft carrier was done by the Indian Navy's Directorate of Naval Design, which was developed into detailed design by the design team of CSL. The ship has a length of over 260 metres and breadth of 60 metres. It has two take-off runways and a landing strip with three arrester wires, capable of operating Stobar aircraft, including the indigenous LCA, as well as a range of helicopters with hangar facilities. The deck is designed to enable aircraft such as the MiG-29K to operate from the carrier. It will deploy up to 30 fixed-wing aircraft, primarily the Mikoyan MiG-29K and the naval variant of the HAL Tejas Mark 2, besides carrying 10 Kamov Ka-31 or Westland Sea King helicopters. The Ka-31 will fulfil the airborne early warning (AEW) role and the Sea King will provide anti-submarine warfare (ASW) capability.
The carrier is powered by four General Electric LM2500 gas turbines on two shafts, generating over 80Mw of power.
Major outfitting work of the ship will be done now. Later, basin trials and extensive sea trials will be undertaken prior to delivery to the Navy, CSL officials said.