- On the 10th of September, vice-admiral SR Sharma- Chief of Material and Controller warship production and acquisition of the Indian Navy and VL Kantha Rao Additional Secretary of the Defence production laid the kneel for the third ship with yard Number 12653 of the project 17A -Nilgiri Class Frigates.
- Under Project 17A Class Frigates Seven Stealth frigates will be constructed for the Indian navy. out of seven, four frigates will be built by Mazagon Dock Shipbuilders Limited and the rest of three by GRSE.
- Project 17A is the follow on of the project 17 Shivalik Class under which three multirole Guided-missile type frigates were built. The Ships are being built under Project 17A use indigenously developed steel and Modern technology Integrated Construction is being used in the construction., so the blocks are pre-outfitted before joining results in reducing the building period.
- The keel-laying ceremony for the first stealth frigate INS Nilgiri Was laid in 2017 and the frigate is expected to be delivered to the Indian Navy in 2022.
- The Ships are being fitted with weapons and sensors along with an integrated platform management system. The project is said to have cost around 45000 crores.
- The Ships to be built under Project 17A are listed as-
- Project 17A will showcase India’s indigenous capabilities in designing, building, and integrating systems for modern stealth frigates. Frigates are being constructed by integrating modern design and stealth features such as radar suppression screens which ultimately reduces the radar cross-section of the ship.
- Nilgiri Class frigate is 149 m long and 17.8 m wide.
- the ship will be powered by Two MAN Diesel 12V28/33D STC engine producing 6000 KW of power each and Two General Electric LM2500 marine gas engine producing maximum power of 25060 KW.
- The ship will be equipped with EL/M-2248 MF-STAR S-band multifunctional radar developed by IAI ELTA, BEL HUMSA-NG bow sonar, and Ajanta Electronic warfare system.
- Project 17A class frigate can accommodate two medium-sized helicopters such as HAL Dhruv or Sea king MK 42B.
- Each frigate will be equipped with 32 Barack and 8 Brahmos Surface to air missiles and these missiles will be fired from a vertical launch system.
- Each frigate will be fitted with one BAE 5 Inch 62 Calibre MK-45 Naval gun and two AK-630 M Close-in weapon system.
- Two RBU-6000 ASW rocket launchers will be fitted onboard the frigates for Anti-submarine warfare.
- After the induction of these modern stealth frigates, the Indian navy will have more deadly and advanced frigates then the previous one.
- The modular method of construction will be used in these frigates because of which time and cost will be saved in the future for adding modification or incorporating upgrades to the ship.
- These Ships are going to play a critical role in countering Chinese growing influence in the Indian Ocean Region in the future and this will significantly increase the capabilities of the Indian navy to counter any aggression.
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