Vikrant, India’s first-ever indigenous aircraft carrier (IAC) has come back to the harbour of Kochi after completing its third sea trials, a defence spokesperson informed Monday. The IAC had embarked on the new trials on January 9, 2022, and returned on January 16.
The set of comprehensive trials in the high seas was planned to ensure smooth induction in August this year. The trial date is yet to be analyzed. Some mandatory inspections and additional balance work on the vessel are soon to be done. Many ship systems were extensively examined and operated with training on the equipment fitted onboard.
The 40,000-tonne Vikrant, the most complex and largest warship ever constructed in India, completed its five-day maiden voyage in the seas during August 2021. It also went for 10-day trials in October last year.
Many scientists from a Visakhapatnam-based DRDO facility, the Naval Science and Technological Laboratory, were a witness to the third phase of Vikrant’s sea trials.
The warship was envisioned to operate Kamov Ka-31, MiG-29K fighter jets, and also MH-60R multirole helicopters.
The cost to build IAC Vikrant amounted to approximately Rs 23,000 crore. The successful construction has featured India in a select group of countries that can indigenously build next-gen aircraft carriers.
Ram Nath Kovind, India’s President and the country’s, VP M Venkaiah Naidu, have visited and praised the IAC recently.