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Old 30th November 2022, 22:56   #301
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Re: The Indian Navy - Combat Fleet

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Originally Posted by dragracer567 View Post
Based on what I know, our newer indigenous frigates - the Shivalik class and the Nilgiri class run the American (locally assembled) GE turbines (same one from the Vikrant) combined with diesel engines (CODOG).
Ah I wasn't aware that the GE turbines were locally assembled. Does local assembly help with spares availability generally? Even with license assembly (which I'm assuming is the case for these GE turbines made in India)?

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Last I remember about the Zorya turbines was that the Russians bombed their main factory quite early during the war and then offered India an alternative they use in their ships as a Zorya replacement (since they obviously canít get spares from Ukraine).
I think even before the dust settles, it would be worth taking stock of the myriad ways in which this war is going to impact the Indian military. Feel like it would be a handy thread to highlight the Russia and Ukraine nodes in the Indian defence infrastructure.

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Anyway, unlikely we will use either Zorya or Russian engines in our future designs. Our future destroyers and frigates will probably run diesel-electric + Gas turbines mostly likely produced in collaboration with Rolls Royce. The problem is, we still have ships under construction and planned that are supposed to use the Zorya engines
I see, guess RR could use all the partnerships and customers it can get. I'd heard rumblings of them being open for business with their aerospace engines but I guess it's no surprise that their marine turbine division would follow suit.

I'm less up to speed on the marine turbine space but where does RR fit in? I'd imagine GE has a major share of the pie (both military and civilian marine turbine sales).

Forgive me if this has been discussed already but I was wondering. The struggles with a bleeding edge aerospace turbine domestically made by China are well documented but how have they fared when it comes to their efforts in the marine turbine space? Considering the sheer volume and pace of their shipbuilding industry (both civ+mil), I'm guessing they have workable domestic options in service?
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Old 30th November 2022, 23:14   #302
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Re: The Indian Navy - Combat Fleet

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Originally Posted by ads11 View Post

Forgive me if this has been discussed already but I was wondering. The struggles with a bleeding edge aerospace turbine domestically made by China are well documented but how have they fared when it comes to their efforts in the marine turbine space? Considering the sheer volume and pace of their shipbuilding industry (both civ+mil), I'm guessing they have workable domestic options in service?
All I know that marine gas turbine market is very small compared to overall gas turbine market. The marine gas turbine market can be split into two main types, electrical and mechanical. Electrical means the gas turbine powers a generator which powers an emoter that drives the propellor. Mechanical means the gas turbine drives the propellor directly (well not directly of course, there are gears involved and it tends to be hooked up to a separate turbine wheel.

The total market is less than 100 units annually.

Marine gas turbines are used primarily on war ships and a few other types of ships. They have been used on ferries (e.g. Stena Discovery). As mentioned their biggest advantages is they require virtually hardly any warm up period. Within minutes (some time less) after starting they can produce 100% power. Large marine diesel, medium speed diesel, simply canít. Depending on size / type it might take several hours from start to full power.

The gasturbine packs a huge amount of power in a very small volume and weight, which is interesting for ships, but needs very large air in- and outlets. Itís main disadvantage is they are not very fuel efficient compared to diesels. That was the main reason for instance for decommissioning the Stena Discovery and other commercial gas turbine vessels during the last 10-15 years.

Not sure how easy it is to convert an aeronautical gas turbine design into a marine version.

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Old 30th November 2022, 23:33   #303
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Re: The Indian Navy - Combat Fleet

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Originally Posted by Jeroen View Post
Not sure how easy it is to convert an aeronautical gas turbine design into a marine version.
Jeroen
The latest Aircraft carrier of the Indian navy INS Vikrant seems to be powered by one such GE Trubine. In fact it is produced by GE Aviation. Actually there seem to be several such turbines, apart from that of GE.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/General_Electric_LM2500

Last edited by Gansan : 30th November 2022 at 23:34.
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Old 1st December 2022, 00:07   #304
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Re: The Indian Navy - Combat Fleet

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Originally Posted by Jeroen View Post
All I know that marine gas turbine market is very small compared to overall gas turbine market...
The total market is less than 100 units annually.
Thanks Jeroen! Wow, that really is a minuscule market! I don't think I expected it to be quite that small. Guess when the market size is that small, there's really no incentive for anyone really to do a total clean sheet marine gas turbine then, especially if doing so from scratch domestically.

Are most existing designs then iterative updates that can be traced back from one model so to speak? Just going by what V.Narayan said earlier, seems the Zorya turbine is practically venerable in the sheer number of platforms it powers.

Does having an electrical turbine make for a more reliable set up than having the gas turbine more directly connected to the propeller?
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Old 1st December 2022, 00:41   #305
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Re: The Indian Navy - Combat Fleet

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Originally Posted by ads11 View Post

Are most existing designs then iterative updates that can be traced back from one model so to speak? Just going by what V.Narayan said earlier, seems the Zorya turbine is practically venerable in the sheer number of platforms it powers.

Does having an electrical turbine make for a more reliable set up than having the gas turbine more directly connected to the propeller?
I really don’t know much on the historical aspect of designing a gas turbine, I am afraid.

The electrical version is often used to create more flexibility in power requirements. It’s easier and cheaper to sync up a couple of generators to supply power to the same grid. Then multiple mechanical geared turbines on one shaft.

Combining diesel and gasturbines to power an electrical grid on a vessel is very often done tongetje the benefits of both diesel and gas turbine. You have decent power on the diesels, but just add the gasturbines to add a lot of power immediately and for a short while.

That is similar to shore based electrical steam power plants, who often have a few gas turbine driven alternators for peak loads. Steam turbines are even worse than diesel when it comes to adjusting quickly to heavy loads.

Also, many modern ships have these so called Azipod and Z pod drives. Basically a huge pod protruding from the hull of the ship with a build in emoter and propellor. These pods can rotate 360o, which gives these ships excellent manoeuvrable. These are always electrical driven, at least the larger ones are.

I have sailed as engineer on a fire fighting Anchor Handling Tug. We had two fire monitor, both powered by a very simple gas turbine. About 2-3000BHP each. I can’t recall the make, but I do remember that it was a derivative from a gas turbine used on helicopters.

Jeroen

Last edited by Jeroen : 1st December 2022 at 00:44.
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Old 1st December 2022, 09:30   #306
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Re: The Indian Navy - Combat Fleet

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Originally Posted by ads11 View Post

I see, guess RR could use all the partnerships and customers it can get. I'd heard rumblings of them being open for business with their aerospace engines but I guess it's no surprise that their marine turbine division would follow suit.

I'm less up to speed on the marine turbine space but where does RR fit in? I'd imagine GE has a major share of the pie (both military and civilian marine turbine sales).
Perhaps this press release from Rolls Royce could help answer some of your questions. If I understand correctly, RR primarily focuses on the electrification part and they seem to have played a role in the HMS Queen Elizabeth as well. Sorry if I sound vague, not an engineer


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Rolls-Royce is the only manufacturer in the world that has provided navalised marine gas turbine generators into front-line integrated full electric propulsion (IFEP) powered destroyers and aircraft carriers. Being a key member of the Power and Propulsion Sub-Alliance, Rolls-Royce was responsible for the design, procurement, manufacture, integration, test and delivery of the Queen Elizabeth Carrier shipsí power and propulsion system, which includes the mighty MT30 marine gas turbine and a low voltage electrical distribution system.

The Royal Navyís new Queen Elizabeth Class (QEC) aircraft carriers operate an IFEP system that is one of the most advanced propulsion systems offering increased power, flexibility and reliability Ė best suited for large warships. It provides two MT30 marine gas turbine alternators per ship, rated at 36MW, with the power to propel these vessels beyond 25knots. The MT30 alone delivers huge design benefits through its power density, significantly reducing the number of gas turbines required to power advanced naval platforms. The MT30 also guarantees its power throughout the 50-year service life expectancy of the ship. The QEC also feature a complete Rolls-Royce low voltage (LV) electrical distribution system that distributes enough electricity to power the equivalent of 5,000 family homes.

As electrical power system integrators, Rolls-Royce provides solutions for both hybrid and all-electric naval vessels, optimising performance to satisfy electrical load demands of the future such as advanced sensor, propulsion and combat systems. It is also an experienced provider of low voltage (LV) electrical power distribution systems for a range of warship and submarine applications.
With over 80 years of naval propulsion experience, Rolls-Royce has pioneered some of the most important technical advances in marine propulsion including the use of aero gas turbines for surface ship propulsion. The company offers a world-leading portfolio of marine products and systems ranging from gas turbines and diesel engines, propulsion, electrical & automation systems, deck handling and innovative unmanned technologies as well as comprehensive customer support for present and future fleets.
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Old 4th December 2022, 11:15   #307
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Re: The Indian Navy - Combat Fleet

https://www.news18.com/news/india/na...s-6532681.html

https://theprint.in/defence/indian-n...krant/1247125/

The Naval Chief says that the IN will consider a second vessel built to the ~42,000 tonne INS Vikrant design in favour of a grounds up IAC-2 of ~65,000 tonnes. Sensible decision in my view. Better to build an improved INS Vikrant - bigger elevators, please - than to take 15 to 20 years on a larger more complex grounds up design.

Today, folks, is Navy Day. The day in 1971, 51 years ago, the Indian Navy launched its first of two successful attacks on Karachi harbour effectively blockading the port. This deserves a detailed post by itself :-) Constructive use of a lazy cool winter Sunday morning
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Old 4th December 2022, 12:49   #308
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Re: The Indian Navy - Combat Fleet

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Originally Posted by V.Narayan View Post

The Naval Chief says that the IN will consider a second vessel built to the ~42,000 tonne INS Vikrant design in favour of a grounds up IAC-2 of ~65,000 tonnes. Sensible decision in my view. Better to build an improved INS Vikrant - bigger elevators, please - than to take 15 to 20 years on a larger more complex grounds up design.
Finally, a pragmatic decision from our Navy. This is especially crucial since the Chinese are apparently getting ready to deploy their Carriers and Submarines at their Djibouti base in the Indian Ocean. We need the denial capabilities in the form of a submarine but in the absence of a shooting war, nothing can beat the shear presence of an aircraft carrier to project force.

The envisaged timeline by CSL that seems to be floating around is 5 years which I doubt since even our destroyers of the same class take 6-7 years to build. The Vikrant cost around $2.9 billion which is a bargain for an aircraft carrier. For a non-apples-to-apples comparison, the INS Vikramaditya cost a cool $2.35 billion just to refurbish an old carrier. For another non-apples-to-apples comparison, our Visakhapatnam class destroyers cost $1.1 billion each (though these are really state-of-the-art). So, I'm guessing that the repeat order would likely be cheaper (taking inflation into account) given that most of the R&D is already done and changes will be limited to bigger elevators and perhaps stronger arrestor cables.

Wonder what will they name it if this is approved. INS Vishal is reserved for the IAC II, perhaps they will bring back the Viraat name?

Other points from The Print article, good to know that the Rafale/F/A-18 and the Predator B contracts are on track, these are crucial capabilities.

Last edited by dragracer567 : 4th December 2022 at 12:52.
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Old 4th December 2022, 14:41   #309
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Re: The Indian Navy - Combat Fleet

Navy Day 4th December – the history behind the day.

Operation Trident was an offensive operation launched by the Indian Navy on Pakistan's port city of Karachi during the Indo-Pakistani War of 1971. It saw the first use of anti-ship guided missiles in combat in the region. The operation was conducted on the night of 4th–5th December 1971 and inflicted heavy damage on Pakistani naval vessels and shore based fuel facilities. While India suffered no losses, Pakistan lost a minesweeper, a destroyer, a cargo vessel carrying ammunition, and some fuel storage tanks in Karachi. Another destroyer was also badly damaged enough to be eventually scrapped. India celebrates its Navy Day annually on 4th December to mark this operation. Operation Trident was followed up by a similar Operation Python three days later.

In 1971 Karachi housed the headquarters of the Pakistan Navy and almost its entire fleet. Since Karachi was also the hub of Pakistan's maritime trade and the largest industrial city of Pakistan a blockade would be crippling for Pakistan's economy. The security of Karachi Harbour was predominant and it was heavily defended against any air or naval strikes. The port's airspace was secured by the strike aircraft based at airfields in the area.

The Indian Navy deemed it unwise to send its World War II vintage cruisers to lay down a naval gun bombardment as they would be too slow and leave the ships vulnerable to a Pakistani air attack. In that era we did not have ship borne surface-to-air-missiles that could have provided some air defense and INS Vikrant, our sole aircraft carrier, had been deployed off the East Coast to blockade East Pakistan.

The Indian Navy - Combat Fleet-q-osai_class.jpg
File photo of a Osa class missile boat. The two large cannisters on either side house the Styx guided missiles

The IN decided to think out of the box and use its small coastal 209-tonne Osa class missile boats, which carried 4 Styx anti-ship guided missiles each, to bombard Karachi. These were small coastal vessels designed by the Soviets for harbour defense and Karachi was 600+ nautical miles {1100 odd kms} away which these missile boats were not capable of traversing through open ocean.

So before hostilities commenced the IN towed the Osa missile boats to Okha, the small naval port at the western tip of Saurashtra from where Karachi was only ~340 kms a range well within the capability of these boats. Also with their top speed in excess of 38 knots {70 kmph} they could just about strike and return between dusk & dawn.

On 4th December, what was now designated as the Karachi Strike Group was formed and consisted of the three boats called the Vidyut-class missile boats by the IN: INS Nipat, INS Nirghat and INS Veer, each armed with four Soviet made SS-N-2B Styx surface-to-surface missiles with a range of 74 km and ~500 kg warhead, two Petya-class anti-submarine corvettes: INS Kiltan and INS Katchall as anti-submarine and air defence escorts. The group was under the command of Commander Babru Bhan Yadav.

As planned, on 4 December, the strike group reached 460 km south off the coast of Karachi, and maintained its position during the day, outside the surveillance range of the Pakistan Air Force. As Pakistani aircraft did not possess night-bombing capabilities, it was planned that the attack would take place between dusk and dawn. At 10.30 pm the Indian task group moved 330 km from its position towards the south of Karachi. Soon Pakistani targets, identified as warships, were detected to the north of the Indian warships.

The Indian Navy - Combat Fleet-q-khaibar_ex_cadiz.jpg
File photo of PNS Khaibar in better days in British service. She was a3400 tonne destroyer armed with 6 4.5 inch guns, 10 Bofors 40mm guns, a bank of 5 torpedoes and an anti-submarine mortar. She represented the British state of the art ot the early 1950s

INS Nirghat, the first to strike, sailed north at speed and once in range fired its first Styx missile at PNS Khaibar, a Pakistani Battle-class destroyer. Khaibar, assuming it was a missile from Indian aircraft, engaged its anti-aircraft systems. The missile hit the right side of the ship , exploding below the galley in the electrician's mess deck at 10.45 PM. This led to an explosion in the first boiler room. Subsequently, the ship lost propulsion. Observing that the ship was still afloat, INS Nirghat fired its second missile hitting PNS Khaibar in the second boiler room on the ship's starboard side rapidly sinking the ship and killing 222 sailors. PNS Khaibar, an ex-British Battle class destroyer was one of the two most powerful warships the Pakistani’s possessed at the time. Her loss so early in the war was crippling.

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PNS Shah Jahan in earlier times in British service. She was a2500 tonne fast destroyer escort or what today are called frigates.

After verifying two targets in the area northwest of Karachi, at 11.00 PM, INS Nipat fired two Styx missiles – one each at cargo vessel MV Venus Challenger and its escort PNS Shah Jahan, a C-class destroyer. Venus Challenger, was carrying American supplied ammunition for the Pakistani forces from Saigon. It exploded immediately after the missile hit, and eventually sank south of Karachi. The other missile targeted PNS Shah Jahan and damaged the ship very badly. It was eventually towed back to Karachi & scrapped.

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File photo of a Adjutant class mine sweeper like PNS Muhafiz

At 11.20 PM PNS Muhafiz, an Adjutant-class minesweeper, was targeted by INS Veer. A missile was fired and Muhafiz was struck on the left side, behind the bridge. It sank immediately before it could send a signal to the PNHQ killing 33 sailors.

To confuse the Pakistani’s the crews of these ships, who had all been trained in the USSR, spoke to each other over radio in Russian! Thus the enemy did not realize the Indian navy was close at hand. Later the Western media claimed that Russians were manning the boats {implying Indians were not clever enough to do so!} little realizing in those days a large proportion of IN officers and Petty Officers were fluent in Russian.

Meanwhile, INS Nipat continued towards Karachi and targeted the Kemari oil storage tanks, placing itself 26 km south of the Karachi harbour. Two missiles were launched; one misfired, but the other hit the oil tanks, which burned and were destroyed completely.

With no casualties on the Indian side, this operation was considered to be one of the most successful in modern naval history up to that time post-World War II. To mark this victory, the Indian Navy annually celebrates Navy Day on 4th December.

The Indian Navy - Combat Fleet-q-pns-dacca.jpg
File photo of the fleet tanker class of ships to which PNS Dacca belonged.

A follow-up attack, Operation Python, was launched on the night of 8th/9th December 1971. A strike group consisting of one missile boat INS Vinash and two frigates INS Talwar & INS Trishul attacked the group of ships off the coast of Karachi. While India suffered no losses, Pakistani fleet tanker PNS Dacca was damaged beyond repair, and the Kemari Oil Storage facility was lost. Two other foreign ships stationed in Karachi were also sunk during the attack. Between Operations Trident and Python, and the Indian Air Force attacks on Karachi's fuel and ammunition depots, more than fifty percent of the total fuel requirement of the Karachi zone was reported to have been destroyed.

Our bold deployment surprised the Soviets pleasantly. Later they told us their satellites had captured a part of the operation!

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The Styx SS-N-2B surface to surface guided missile getting launched. Note the folded wings which are yet to open; note the plume of the booster rocket below; note the main cruise rocket motor on top. The missile was the world’s first successful anti-ship guided missile and was developed through at least 4 successive improved versions. It carried a radar for guidance and to identify and lock-on to targets. It could be called the father of all anti-ship missiles in operation today and set the basic principles of coming in low over the sea and being independent in its guidance and targeting.
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Commander B.B. Yadav {Lieutenant Colonel in the Army}who commanded the Karachi Attack group in Operation Trident. He passed away in 2010 at the ripe age of 81. He rose to the rank of Commodore {Brigadier in the Army} before serving for some years as a Merchant Navy Master. He was awarded the Maha Vir Chakra. The photo above is from the time of his retirement.
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Line drawing of the Osa class missile boat which spawned a whole family of ships called missile boats or Fast Attack Craft (Missile). It is rare for a class of war ship types to be able to identity a single ship or class as the progenitor of a whole type. Osa is one such. HMS Dreadnought the first fast battleship (1906), USS Nautilius the first nuclear powered submarine (1953) are two which come immediately to my mind. Note the 4 missile carrying cannisters on either side. Note the fore and aft radar directed 30mm two anti-aircraft gun mountings. Displacing a little over 200 tonnes these were powered by 3 diesels on three shaft with an output of 12,000 shp in all driving the boat to a bit over 38 knots. Like all things Soviets the design was powerful, fast and packed to the gill. The crew of 28 had one shower and one head (toilet) between them. :-)
Reference: Transition to Triumph, History of the Indian Navy by Vice Admiral GN Hiranandani

Last edited by Aditya : 5th December 2022 at 06:20. Reason: As requested
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Old 6th December 2022, 00:35   #310
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Re: The Indian Navy - Combat Fleet

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Originally Posted by V.Narayan View Post

Attachment 2386528
File photo of a Osa class missile boat. The two large cannisters on either side house the Styx guided missiles

The IN decided to think out of the box and use its small coastal 209-tonne Osa class missile boats, which carried 4 Styx anti-ship guided missiles each, to bombard Karachi.
Thank you for the wonderful account. The heart swells with pride when we hear stories of our men and women in uniform.
Shows how a good plan along with out the box thinking can work wonders.

Quote:
To confuse the Pakistani’s the crews of these ships, who had all been trained in the USSR, spoke to each other over radio in Russian! Thus the enemy did not realize the Indian navy was close at hand. Later the Western media claimed that Russians were manning the boats {implying Indians were not clever enough to do so!} little realizing in those days a large proportion of IN officers and Petty Officers were fluent in Russian.
Oh sure! The Russians must have been behind the attack because how dare a third world country plan and execute such a daring attack on a key Western ally?
Western prejudices against India have always been strong. They would concoct any story but refuse to acknowledge India's successes (however big or small they were). Its so heartening to note that India has always countered these with actions and not words.
Shows in the way the relationships have evolved.

Please allow me to post a few pics of INS Chapal - a missile boat thats similar to the Vidyut (Osa I) class used for Operation Trident. INS Chapal was a Chamak class (Osa II class) missile boat (as per Wikipedia, its an improved version but very similar to the Osa I class). These boats did not take part in Operation Trident. They were actually inducted after the war. Posting here since these are very similar to the Vidyut class boats.
She is displayed at the Karwar beach and you can go inside the boat.
If you are in Karwar or even at Goa or Gokarna, do make time to visit this boat.

The Indian Navy - Combat Fleet-img_20210819_131119.jpg
Here is the boat on static display. You can see the giant missile tubes (2 on each side) that housed the P15 Termit (Styx SS-N-2B) missiles. In the original Vidyut (Osa I) class, these tubes were more squared off (pic in Narayan Sir's post).


The Indian Navy - Combat Fleet-img_20210819_132244.jpg
Inside one of the missile tubes which stored the P15 Termit missile. You can see the rails on which the missile rode before exiting the tube. The missile sat inside with its wings folded down. The boat carried 4 of them.


The Indian Navy - Combat Fleet-img_20210819_132717.jpg
The controls of the 3 Zvezda M504B radial diesel engines.


The Indian Navy - Combat Fleet-img_20210819_133532.jpg
Here is one of the Zvezda M504B radial diesel engines. These weighed about 5tons each and each had 42cylinders laid out as 6 cylinders per bank with 7 banks! They produced around 5000HP. The boat had 3 of them.


The Indian Navy - Combat Fleet-img_20210819_135837.jpg
A P15 Termit missile on display. Notice the cuts on the main wings where they were folded before launch.

Last edited by arijitkanrar : 6th December 2022 at 00:42. Reason: Fixed error with attachment.
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Old 6th December 2022, 05:30   #311
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Re: The Indian Navy - Combat Fleet

Thank you @arijitkanrar for sharing those photos of the Osa-II class INS Chapal. There are many great stories from the 1971 war that need to be told and re-told so that younger generations aka the wonderful energetic members & readers of Team BHP know their recent, and still living, history. Quoting below an old post of mine from an earlier thread of 2015.
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007, INS Vikrant, India's aircraft carrier & PNS Ghazi, Pakistan's submarine

The saga of INS Vikrant is inter-twined with that of Pakistan's long range submarine PNS Ghazi. For those on Team BHP who are in their 50s and more and those who are keen on military history this story may be familiar. For the other brothers and sisters on Team BHP this could be a chapter worth reading.

In the months preceding the war in December 1971 the enemy (ie Pakistan) were obsessed with the whereabouts of INS Vikrant and were determined to sink her as soon as hostilities broke out. An aircraft carrier by definition is a weapon of sea dominance and the Pakistani's were right in wanting to knock her out. The Indian Navy sailed their capital ship to Chennai and made her presence very visible there. The US embassy in India flew their ambassador's business jet from Delhi to Chennai ostensibly on routine diplomatic visit. It was piloted by a US naval officer whose one job was to overfly the docks while landing and confirm Vikrant was alongside. The American business jet then surprisingly sprang a maintenance fault and had to be grounded at Chennai for a few weeks while repairs and 'test flights' were conducted all confirming that the old girl with a flat top was resting in Chennai. The Indians conscious of what was afoot played along. You get only half a guess to know whom the Yankees were helping.

The Pakistanis deployed out their long range submarine PNS Ghazi to Chennai to lie there in wait for INS Vikrant. Ghazi arrived on November 23rd, 1971 and settled down 10 nautical miles outside Chennai harbour - close enough to torpedo a warship and far enough to be in waters deeper than 30 fathoms (180 feet) needed for safe submarine operations. In the meantime Vice Admiral Krishnan the Flag Officer of the Eastern Naval Command deployed INS Rajput [a soon to be scrapped WW2 destroyer] with the unenviable job of sailing from Chennai to Vizag sending deceptive signals pretending she was Vikrant. The idea being that the enemy's radio interception and direction finding stations will track the sailing. Radio operators from INS Vikrant were parked on INS Rajput and at Vizag -- because we knew that the enemy recognized the individual radio tapping style of each radio operator of Vikrant -- better to say we made sure they knew.

Once in Vizag INS Rajput started signaling for aircraft ammo, aviation fuel, tons of meat and similar logistics that could mean only one ship in Asian Navies. The ruse worked and PNS Ghazi which had reached Chennai days before the war was ordered by Pakistan Naval HQ to sail on to Vizag and lie in wait there.

By 2nd December PNS Ghazi sat in wait outside Vizag. Lying quiet by day and laying mines by night astride Vizag's narrow harbour entrance. INS Rajput which had by then completed her task of 'ruse de guerre' was sent off on 3rd December night to patrol off the East Pakistan coast. Her Captain noticed a large patch of disturbed water as he exited Vizag - the kind of disturbance in calm waters when a large object like a submarine dives. He dropped two rounds of depth charges, swept the area by sonar, waited to hear a sonar contact, received none and sailed on. A few hours later the same night there was a terrific muffled explosion under the sea and that was it. First light next morning the navy investigated with divers and found PNS Ghazi sunk. Fishermen recovered a life vest of Ghazi. She sank on the night of 3rd-4th December, 1971. The Indian Navy's investigation revealed that one of the mines she was trying to lay exploded while still inside the torpedo tube while being ejected or hydrogen from her batteries had built up inside the vessel leading to the explosion. PNS Ghazi's log book, navigation records and signal records were recovered largely intact. One signal read "Reliable intelligence indicates carrier in port. Proceed to Vishakhapatnam with all despatch". Clearly the ruse had worked. INS Vikrant meanwhile had quietly sailed to the Andaman Islands a week before the war and steamed up to East Pakistan by the time Pakistan commenced hostilities on 3rd December.

The Ghazi's crew of 92 men are on what submariners call the eternal patrol. They died 55 metres under the sea. Across the fog and hatred of war we could call them brave young men who died doing their duty as they saw it. INS Vikrant went on to dominate the waters off East Pakistan and prevent the Pakistani Army from escaping by sea.

There are many versions of this episode on the internet with bombastic claims by arm chair warriors from both side. The above is the way it is described in the Indian Navy's official history of that period. The Indian Navy does not accept claims by some that PNS Ghazi was sunk by us but instead that she hung from her own petard. Our ruse led her to her grave. The shattered hull of PNS Ghazi has now slid into the mud of the seabed and is completely buried.
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Originally Posted by arijitkanrar View Post
Oh sure! The Russians must have been behind the attack because how dare a third world country plan and execute such a daring attack on a key Western ally? Western prejudices against India have always been strong. They would concoct any story but refuse to acknowledge India's successes (however big or small they were). Its so heartening to note that India has always countered these with actions and not words.

Please allow me to post a few pics of INS Chapal - a missile boat thats similar to the Vidyut (Osa I) class used for Operation Trident. INS Chapal was a Chamak class (Osa II class) missile boat (as per Wikipedia, its an improved version but very similar to the Osa I class). These boats did not take part in Operation Trident. They were actually inducted after the war. Posting here since these are very similar to the Vidyut class boats.
+1

PNS Ghazi, a 2400-tonne Tench class US Navy submarine supplied to Pakistan in 1963
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The Indian Navy - Combat Fleet-ussdiablo.jpg  

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Old 7th December 2022, 19:21   #312
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Re: The Indian Navy - Combat Fleet

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Originally Posted by V.Narayan View Post
PNS Ghazi's log book, navigation records and signal records were recovered largely intact.
Hello Sir,

Thank you for an insightful piece of history which I am sure many of my generation would never have heard of.

Another question that popped in my mind and apologies if I am being naive, "If our Navy was able to retrieve the log books and navigation records, obviously somebody had to dive inside the sunken submarine to retrieve this, so my query is did we make an effort to recover the bodies of the sunken soilders from the sub ? " As you rightly said keeping aside the clouds of war, after all they were men doing their duty as they deemed fit.

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Diesel
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Old 7th December 2022, 20:18   #313
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Re: The Indian Navy - Combat Fleet

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Originally Posted by Dieseltuned View Post
Hello Sir,

Thank you for an insightful piece of history which I am sure many of my generation would never have heard of.

Another question that popped in my mind and apologies if I am being naive, "If our Navy was able to retrieve the log books and navigation records, obviously somebody had to dive inside the sunken submarine to retrieve this, so my query is did we make an effort to recover the bodies of the sunken soilders from the sub ? " As you rightly said keeping aside the clouds of war, after all they were men doing their duty as they deemed fit.

Regards
Diesel
Maritime tradition, to best of my knowledge, is to treat a sunken warship as a war grave and to leave it intact with the bodies of the fallen sailors. That is the primary reason. Ingress and egress from a submarine is via circular hatches only 80 cms in diameter. One can imagine the challenge of removing 55 bodies stiff with rigor mortis in awkward positions, partially eaten by fish through a hatch that small not to mention that the inside of a sunk submarine is as pitch dark as it comes which torches help only marginally. It is a miracle our divers with their skill actually got the log book, the ships watch etc out.
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Old 8th December 2022, 02:43   #314
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Re: The Indian Navy - Combat Fleet

It is always a pleasure to read your write ups.

One of my old friends, who also happens to be a member of this forum, had the honour of serving as a gun direction officer during the operation you've mentioned above.

Thanks once again.
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Old 8th December 2022, 15:13   #315
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Re: The Indian Navy - Combat Fleet

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Originally Posted by V.Narayan View Post
Maritime tradition, to best of my knowledge, is to treat a sunken warship as a war grave and to leave it intact with the bodies of the fallen sailors. That is the primary reason. Ingress and egress from a submarine is via circular hatches only 80 cms in diameter. One can imagine the challenge of removing 55 bodies stiff with rigor mortis in awkward positions, partially eaten by fish through a hatch that small not to mention that the inside of a sunk submarine is as pitch dark as it comes which torches help only marginally. It is a miracle our divers with their skill actually got the log book, the ships watch etc out.
Thank you again, this is elightening information. I had no idea about warship as a war grave. It is indeed a tough ask to go in into a sunken sub to retrieve the log book, etc. I think the scene inside that sub would have been quite eerie and scary for the divers as they would have come across some of the bodies of the dead soilders.

Regards
Diesel
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