February 24th, 2016
Image Courtesy: indileak
India’s first nuclear submarine INS (Indian Naval Submarine) Arihant has passed the deep sea tests and is ready for operation. The 1970 sanctioned project of INS Arihant nuclear missile submarine was built in Vishakhapatnam, accompanied by the Russian diving support ship- RFS Epron. Although this nuclear missile submarine could not participate in the International Fleet Review (IFR) due to several security concerns, yet many trials performed in secrecy have now confirmed the accomplishment of its tests; even “surpassed our expectations”, as mentioned by an official.
Technically, INS Arihant is ready to be launched anytime now; if commanded by Modi, the SSBN (Ballistic missile submarine) will be commission by March; stated a senior official.
Arihant’s design and development at its best
This SSBN is to be equipped with K-15 (or BO-5) short-range missiles with a range of over 700 km. and K4 ballistic missile with a range of 3,500 km. This submarine has other notable features like the 83 megawatts pressure light water reactor consisting of enriched uranium fluid, which was integrated into the hull of the Advanced Technology Vessel (ATV) in January 2008. Its surface speed can get 12k to 15k, and submerged speed upto 24k. This submarine is also equipped with torpedoes and missiles with 12 of them being the ballistic ones.
The development of the vital parts of this submarine has been incorporated with the efforts of many private companies like L&T, Walchandnagar Industries and Tata Power.
The 100 member crew of Arihant has been trained with Russian specialists; Russia has been assisting India with a lot of other projects but INS Arihant has been strategically the most important one. Russia has shown a significant national friendship by helping India acquire a boomer. Boomer technology has been a closely guarded secret, which, apart from Russia to India, Americans had passed on their SSBN and SLBM (Submarine-launched ballistic missile) technology to the British as a token of their friendship.
The other SSBNs of Arihant class is told to be larger, even more, advanced and heavily equipped. Currently, two of which is undergoing the process of induction at the Ship Building Centre at Vishakhapatnam.
Passing all the tests over a period of 6 months
The locally developed nuclear submarine, INS Arihant, went through various critical tests to reach to its perfection. These tests were taken place off Vishakhapatnam port on the eastern coast of India, out in the Bay of Bengal. The tests included the firing of an unarmed medium-range missile and armed missiles, diving tests and power-option tests, speed, pitch and rolling maneuver. These tests have ensured the acceleration load capability, the ability to stay underwater for a considerably longer period of time and immediate responsiveness to ramp-up.
There has been a substantial amount of difficulties which the Department of Atomic Energy (DAE) and the Defense Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) faced with respect to attaining several parameters of successes.
India’s Nuclear Triad and ICBM
With the firing of its first missile, the indigenously made nuclear submarine- INS Arihant, India formally completed the nuclear triad of air, land and sea.
After several trials and tests, Arihant has, reportedly, perfected in its technology which makes India a part of the nobility countries that have Intercontinental Ballistic Missiles (ICBM) that includes 6 other countries.
Within 15 years of time, a new class of nuclear-powered attack submarine is hoped to be inducted, which will cost up to Rs. 90,000 crores, building, at least, six of such submarines.Besides all the technical accomplishments, INS Arihant marks the success of a strategic triumph. This submarine, thus, stands as the first ever Indian nuclear submarine and a symbol of pride for the entire nation.