The country’s third indigenous destroyer INS Chennai built at the Mazagon Docks was launched by the Defence Minister AK Antony’s wife Elizabeth Antony amidst Vedic hymns at a function in Mumbai today. INS Chennai has been built under Project 15A. The 163 meter long warship, propelled by four gas turbines is designed to achieve speedz in excess of 30 knots. The indigenously designed ship will have state of the art weapons and sensors, stealth features, an advanced action information system, a comprehensive auxiliary control system, world class modular living spaces, sophisticated power distribution system and a host of other advanced features, according to a statement released today.
INS Chennai will be fitted with the supersonic BrahMos surface-to-surface missile system. The system enables the ship to engage shore-based and naval surface targets at long range making it a lethal platform for strike against enemy targets. The ship’s air defence capability, designed to counter the threat of enemy aircraft and anti-ship cruise missile will revolve around the vertical launch, long range surface to air missile system, which is being co-developed by DRDO. Four AK-630 rapid-fire guns will provide the ship with close-in-defence capability while an MR gun will enable her to provide effective naval gunfire support. Indigenously developed twin tube torpedo launchers and rocket launchers will add punch to the ship’s anti-submarine capability.
Once again, MDL will be using a ‘Pontoon Assisted Launching’ method to launch this vessel in collaboration with Baltisky Zavod of St. Petersburg, Russia. In this method, pontoons are welded to the hull, which will increase buoyancy and will overcome limitation on the launch weight and tidal constraints. This method will be the future of launching process in MDL and give the required flexibility in selection of launching dates, which were hitherto dictated by tidal considerations. Also as we progress towards a modular building concept, it will be possible to launch ships of a much higher weight. INS Chennai will be commissioned into the Navy in August 2013.
Abridged from DPR Statement