INS Vikrant

INS Vikrant

A warship programme that must go full steam ahead

 #GS-03 Security, Science and Technology

For Prelims

INS Vikrant:

  • Named after India’s first aircraft carrier, INS Vikrant is the largest naval ship to be designed and built in India and has a displacement of 45,000 tonnes.
  • Vikrant is run by four General Electric LM2500+ gas turbines on two shafts which generate over 80 megawatts (110,000 hp) of power.
  • The ship plays home to Russian MiG-29K fighters and the Kamov 31 helicopters, as well as the soon to be acquired American MH-60R Seahawk helicopters.

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INS Vikramaditya

  • INS Vikramaditya is a medium-sized STOBAR-type aircraft carrier, capable carrying up to 30 aircraft and helicopters, with ability to act as both fleet air defence and land attack.

History of Aircraft Carriers:

  • The history of Aircraft carriers dates back to the first world war.
  • The Imperial Japanese Navy ship Wakamiya conducted the world’s first successful ship-launched air raid.
  • The first carrier-launched airstrike was the Tondern raid in July 1918 when seven Sopwith Camels were launched from the battlecruiser HMS Furious to attack the German airbase at Tondern, Germany.
  • HMS Argus in 1918 became the world’s first carrier capable of launching and recovering naval aircraft.
  • As of September 2022, there are 47 active aircraft carriers, including INS Vikrant, in the world operated by fourteen navies.
  • The United States Navy operates the highest number of Aircraft Carriers with 11 large nuclear-powered Carriers which can carry around 80 fighters each.
  • The United Kingdom, India and China each operate two aircraft
  • France and Russia each operate a single aircraft
  • Italy operates two light fleet carriers and Spain operates one.
  • Helicopter carriers are operated by Japan, France, India, Australia, Egypt, South Korea, China, Thailand and Brazil.

Categorisation of Aircraft Carriers

By Size:

Aircraft carriers can be classified as light, medium and large/super-carriers.

  • Light carriers are those ships which can carry up to 25 aircraft.
  • The medium-sized carriers can carry around 30 to 50 aircraft.
  • Large/super-carriers have the capacity to carry over 90 aircraft.
By role:
  • In terms of role they play in combat, they are subdivided into fleet, escort, air defence, amphibious assault and anti-submarine warfare (helicopter) carriers.
  • However, this division is often flexible as most modern aircraft carriers have the capacity to perform multiple roles.
By technology used to launch and recover aircraft:

They are categorised as:

  • Catapult Assisted Take-Off But Arrested Recovery (CATOBAR),
  • Short Take-off But Arrested Recovery (STOBAR), and
  • Vertical/Short Take-Off and Landing (V/STOL) carriers.

Source “A warship programme that must go full steam ahead