Mumbai, Sep 1: Vice President Jagdeep Dhankhar on Friday launched ‘Mahendragiri’, the fourth Stealth Frigate of Project-17 Alpha, being built by the Mazagon Dock Shipbuilders Ltd (MDL).
The fourth and final ship of the Nilgiri Class being constructed by the MDL, the ‘Mahendragiri’ has been designed by the Indian Navy’s Bureau of Naval Design and will be fitted with advanced state-of-the-art weapons, sensors, communication facilities and other systems.
The first ship in the P-17A ‘Nilgiri’ was launched in September 2019 and is expected to go for sea trials around mid-2024, the second ship P-17A ‘Udaygiri’ was launched in May 2022 with sea trials in the second half of 2024, and the third ‘Taragiri’ was launched in September 2020 with delivery expected by August 2025.
Named after a mountain peak in the Eastern Ghats in Odisha, the keel of ‘Mahendragiri’ was laid in June 2022, and like the previous versions, is being built with integrated construction methodology.
The P-17A series is valued at a total Rs.27,500 crore and the MDL Mumbai is constructing four of the seven ships in this class.
The ‘Mahendragiri’ will be around 149 metres long and 16 metres wide, with a displacement of around 6,600 tons and a speed of some 30 knots.
Akin to the other three frigates, the steel used in the hull construction is indigenously developed DMR 249A, a low-carbon micro-alloy grade steel manufactured by SAIL.
The P-17A ships are far more advanced than any other frigates operated by the Indian Navy and come with powerful weapons and sensor packages which are capable of neutralising threats from three dimensions – air, surface, and sub-surface.
The indigenously-designed ‘Mahendragiri’ will have state-of-the-art weaponry, sensors, advanced action information system, integrated platform management system, world-class modular living spaces, sophisticated power distribution system and other modern features.
It will be fitted with a supersonic surface-to-surface missile system, and its air defence capability designed to counter enemy aircraft threats and anti-ship cruise missiles will revolve around the vertical launch and long-range surface-to-air missile system.
The ship will have two 30-mm rapid-fire guns for close-in-defence capability and an SRGM Gun will provide effective naval gunfire support, plus other ‘punches’ like an indigenously developed triple tube lightweight torpedo launchers and rocket launchers for anti-submarine operations.
Incidentally, last month, President Droupadi Murmu had launched the ‘INS Vindhyagiri’ of the P-17A in Kolkata, the last of the three being built by the GRSE Ltd. (IANS)