Security Issues

New Navy Submarines of the Scorpene Class Announcement

Three more Scorpene submarines will be purchased through the Buy (Indian) category. The submarines will be built in Mumbai by Mazagon Dock Shipbuilders Limited (MDL).

Submarines Scorpene and Project-75

  • Project-75: MDL is already developing six Scorpene class submarines using technologies transferred from the French defence industry under Project-75.
  • Submarines Commissioned: Five of the six Scorpene submarines have been commissioned, with the sixth scheduled to be commissioned early next year.
  • Delays and Challenges: Project-75 experienced considerable delays, with the first submarine slated to be delivered in 2012.

Additional Submarines Are Required

  • Addressing Delays and Strengthening the Fleet: Three additional submarines are required to compensate for Project-75’s delayed deliveries and to bolster India’s submarine fleet.
  • Current Fleet Status: The Indian Navy presently operates 16 conventional submarines, but it need at least 18 submarines to conduct its full range of activities.
  • Refit Obstacles: At any one time, approximately 30% of submarines are being refitted, significantly limiting the number of operational submarines.
  • Job Creation: Purchasing new submarines with a larger indigenous component will provide job prospects and strengthen MDL’s submarine building capabilities.

Capabilities of Scorpene Submarines

  • Attack Submarines: Scorpene submarines are built as traditional attack submarines capable of targeting and sinking enemy naval vessels.
  • Weapons and Surveillance: They are equipped with surveillance and intelligence-gathering devices and can unleash a variety of torpedoes and missiles.
  • Specifications: Scorpene submarines are approximately 220 feet long and 40 feet tall. When above, they can reach speeds of 11 mph and 20 knots when submerged.
  • Diesel-Electric Propulsion: These submarines use diesel-electric propulsion systems, which have a 50-day endurance.

In comparison, nuclear submarines

  • Current Nuclear Submarines in India: India presently operates two Arihant-class nuclear-powered submarines (SSBMs).
  • Nuclear submarines have theoretically limitless endurance and can operate for up to 30 years without refuelling. They can also travel at faster rates.
  • Nuclear submarines are expensive to run and necessitate specialised knowledge.
  • Innovations in Conventional Submarines: Diesel-electric technology has increased the range and stealth of conventional submarines dramatically.
  • Air Independent Propulsion (AIP): Adding AIP systems to Scorpene submarines will improve their endurance and stealth.

@the end

  • India’s decision to purchase three new Scorpene submarines increases its naval capability while also strengthening the domestic manufacturing sector.
  • These submarines will help satisfy the needs of a growing fleet and increase operational readiness.
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