|SPECIFICATIONS||PHOTOGRAPHS (Click on the pictures for an enlarged photo)|
Length: 900 ft
Width: 174 ft
Beam: 107 ft
Displacement: 45,000 tons
Propulsion: 8 turbo pressurized boilers,
Speed: 32 knots
Crew: 2000 (600 Airwing)
Airwing: 30 fixed, rotary
- 3 X 24 SA-N-9 SAM
- 4 X 32 CADS-N-1 SAM/CIWS
- 4 X AK-630 30mm CIWS
-2 X 12 ASW RBU-6000
Ships in class: 1
Operations and defensive systems are planned to be a mix of western, Russian, and indeginous Indian systems, like a number of other Indian naval vessels.
The Vikramaditya will replace the aging INS Viraat aircraft carrier in 2013, after commissioning. Also in 2013-2014, the Vikramaditya will be joined by the INS Virkant, currently under construction and due to be the first indegenously designed and built Indian aircraft carrier.
In 2010, because of cost overruns construction on the Vikramaditya was stopped until a new deal was reached between Russia and India totaling 2.3 billion for the carrier and initial airwing. In early 2011 she was officially launched and in March 2011 she underwent mooring trials. She began intial sea trials June 5, 2012. Due to some issues with 3-4 of her boilers, she is scheduled to be delivered to the Indian Navy now sometime in the late spring to early summer of 2013.
Russia delivered the first four MiG-29K aircraft - two single seat fighters and two twin seat trainers - under contract to India in February 2009 and a batch of Indian Navy pilots started six months training on the aircraft in Russia. The MiG-29Ks were certified by Russian pilots taking off from the Russian carrier, Kuznetsov. The four aircraft were test flown from the Russian aircraft carrier Admiral Kuznetsov by Russian pilots on September 28-29, 2009.
A second lot of four MiG-29K and one lot of MiG29KUBs were delivered to India in May 2011 along with a simulator and other technical equipment. On August 2, 2011, CEO of MiG corporation Sergei Korotkov told Interfax news agency that a total of 11 MiG-29Ks had been delivered to India so far.
"From the first contract for 16 jets which included 12 single seater MiG-29K and two double seater trainer-cum -fighter MiG-29KUB, we have already delivered 11 fighters, including 9 single seater and 2 double seater jets to the Indian Navy," CEO of MiG, Sergei Korotkov, said.
Indian pilots are training to fly the MiG-29Ks from a shore-based facility. They have been doing up to 15 sorties per day. Russia and India signed an additional $1.5-billion contract for an additional 29 MiG-29Ks in New Delhi during the visit of Russian PM Vladimir Putin.
"An agreement on supplying an additional set of MiG-29K fighter jets has been signed, the start of supplies is scheduled for 2012," Mikhail Pogosyan said.
This will bring the Indian fleet of Mig-29Ks to a total of 45 aircraft for the Vikramaditya and the upcoming Virkant, currently being built in India.
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