INS Chakra

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Why In News?

A Russian technical team is in Vizag for a joint investigation into the mysterious damage suffered by INS Chakra, the nuclear submarine leased to India in 2011.

FACTS (For Prelims)

BACKGROUND

1.INS Chakra is a Russia-made, nuclear-propelled, hunter-killer submarine. Unlike conventional submarines that India operates which need to surface to charge their batteries often – sometimes as frequently as 24 hours – INS Chakra can stay under as long as it wants. Its ability to stay underwater is restrained only by human endurance to stay underwater.

2.The Akula class submarine is an SSN and is to provide escort to INS Arihant, the indigenously constructed ballistic missile submarine that would carry nuclear missiles.

3.INS Chakra has been taken on lease from Russia for 10 years and would provide the Navy the opportunity to train personnel and operate such nuclear-powered vessels. In 2004, India had signed a deal with Russia worth over $900 million for leasing the submarine. INS Chakra was expected to be inducted into Indian Navy a couple of years ago, but after an onboard accident in 2008, in which several Russian sailors died, the delivery schedule was changed.

FEATURES

1.It carries conventional weapons. The vessel is armed with four 533mm torpedo tubes and four 650mm torpedo tubes.

2.It displaces about 10,000 tons.

3.It can do over 30 knots – more than twice the speed of conventional submarines.

4.It can go up to a depth of 600 meters.

5.It is one of the quietest nuclear submarines around, with noise levels next to zero.

SIGNIFICANCE

1.The presence of the nuclear-powered submarine clearly indicates India’s intentions in the Indian Ocean Region and South East Asia which has recently seen increasing assertive Chinese presence. It will also a send a strong reassuring message to south-east Asian nations like Indonesia, Vietnam, and Malaysia who want India to play a more active role in the region to counter the assertiveness of China in the area.

2.The only other nations possessing nuclear-powered submarines are – US, Russia, UK, France, and China.

 

SOURCE-The Hindu (26th October 2017)

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