Third and last-in-series Indian frigate was launched
Photo: INS Trikand. Press service of JSC Yantar shipyard
On May 25 Yantar shipyard (Kaliningrad, Russia) launched Project 11356 frigate INS Trikand the last in three-ship series ordered by Indian Navy.
According to the shipyard's press secretary Sergei Mikhailov, the frigate's degree of completeness exceeds 60 per cent. All main mechanisms and basic weapons have been already installed, including the Russian-Indian missile system BrahMos.
"High-ranking civilian and military officials from Russia and India participated in the launching ceremony. Although already launched, the frigate will undergo required outfitting and setup works", said Mikhailov by phone.
President of JSC United Shipbuilding Corporation Roman Trotsenko, director of Shipbuilding Industry and Maritime Engineering Dept Leonid Strugov, and chairman of Defense Committee at Russian Parliament Viktor Zavarzin also attended the solemn launching ceremony. The Indian delegation headed by Ambassador to Russia Mr. Ajai Malhotra included naval attaché Commodore Surei Kumar Grewal and the sponsor of INS Trikand the ambassador's spouse Mrs. Ira Malhotra.
Yantar shipyard has been constructing second trio of frigates for Indian Navy since 2006. First two ships INS Teg and INS Tarkash were launched in Nov 2009 and June 2010 respectively. INS Teg is being prepared for sea trials to start late June in the Baltic Sea, and INS Tarkash for mooring trials.
All three frigates were christened by Indian president Mrs. Pratibha Patil. INS Teg, INS Tarkash, and INS Trikand are supposed to reinforce Indian Navy. First trio of frigates ordered by India was build by JSC Baltiysky Zavod in St. Petersburg since 1999 till 2004 (with a one year delay due to technical problems). Cost of the ships exceeded $1 bln. Frigates INS Talwar, INS Trishul, and INS Tabar proved themselves to be quite successful and well-armed ships fully answering their purpose, i.e. perform wide range of antisubmarine and antiaircraft tasks, and escort convoys through crisis regions.
Talwar class frigates are first ships in Indian Navy built under stealth technology and armed with missile vertical launch systems. Having satisfied with high combat and operational performance of this project, Indian Navy command decided to reinforce its fleet with another group of such frigates. The $1.6 bln contract for construction of three frigates was signed in summer 2005; according to the contract terms, the ships were supposed to join Indian Navy in 2011-2012. The project was developed by Severnoye Design Bureau (member of JSC United Shipbuilding Corporation). Deputy Director of Federal Service for Military Technical Cooperation (FSMTC) Alexander Fomin officially assured on Feb 13, 2011 in Bangalore that "despite minor difficulties, frigates built in Kaliningrad for Indian Navy will be delivered to the orderer in time".
The second trio differs from the first one in armament. Instead of antiship missiles Club-N, new frigates are equipped with missile system BrahMos jointly designed by India and Russia. Also, heavy-handled antiaircraft missile/gun systems Kashtan were replaced with combat-proved gun mounts AK-630M.
Russian Navy also tied a contract with Yantar shipyard for three Project 11356 frigates. Admiral Grigorovich was laid down in Dec 2010, the second hull Admiral Essen is planned to be keel-laid on July 8, the third frigate Admiral Makarov will be supposedly laid down at the year-end. Delivery period of the ships is 2013-2014.
Basic characteristics of Project 11356 frigates
Full displacement: 4,035 tons
Length: 124.8 meters
Beam: 15.2 meters
Draft: 4.2 meters
Full speed: 30 knots
Cruising range: 4,850 miles at 14 knots
Endurance: 30 knots
Crew: 200 men (including 18 officers)
Main propulsion plant: 2 gas turbines M7H1, overall power 60,900 shp; 4 x 800 kW diesel generators
Armament: BrahMos antiship cruise missile launcher (8 missiles), one Shtil-1 SAM launcher (24 missiles), one 100-mm gun mount A-190E with Puma guided artillery system, two 30-mm gun mounts AK-630M with Vympel guided artillery system, eight Igla-1E SAM launchers, two coupled 533-mm torpedo tubes DTA-53-956, 1x12 depth-charge launcher RBU-6000 of RPK-8E Zapad system, one Ka-28 (or Ka-31) helicopter.
Radar facilities: general detection radar Fregat-M2EM, acquisition radar ZTsU-25E Kashtan, navigation radar MR-212/201-1, navigation radar Bridge-Master, navigation radar Nucleus-2-6000, electronic warfare system ASOR, sonar system HUMSA and SSN-137.