Why in News:
- The first ship of the four Project-15B state-of-the-art stealth guided missile destroyers, Visakhapatnam, being built at the Mazgaon Docks Limited (MDL), was delivered to the Navy.
About the missile destroyers
- These ships are equipped with BrahMos supersonic cruise missiles and long-range Surface-to-Air missiles (SAM).
- The ship has several indigenous weapons systems like medium range SAMs, indigenous torpedo tube launchers, anti-submarine indigenous rocket launchers and 76-mm super rapid gun mount.
- The design of Project 15B has largely maintained the hull form, propulsion machinery, many platform equipment and major weapons and sensors as the Kolkata class to benefit from series production.
- However, these ships feature enhanced stealth features over the earlier class through shaping of hull and use of radar transparent deck fittings which make them difficult to detect and also feature significant advances in automation and networking.
- The Project 15B ships are a follow-on of the Kolkata-class destroyers (Project 15A) and also known as the Visakhapatnam-class destroyers.
- Destroyer-class warships like INS Visakhapatnam shall play a crucial role as main surface combatant for any Air, Surface and ASW(Anti-Submarine Warfare) operations. These warships are highly capable of hunting and killing the enemy submarines in waters farther away from the Indian shores.
- The Indian Navy’s responsibilities to safeguard a large coastline of 7516 Kms and about 1100 offshore islands along with 2.01 million sq km Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) have been enhanced in the present geopolitical scenario.
- Destroyers like the P-15B class shall play an important role in the larger oceans of the Indo-Pacific, making the Indian Navy a potent force.
- The guided missile Destroyers are deployed for various responsibilities like escort duties with the Carrier Battle Group to protect the Naval fleet against any air, surface and underwater threats.
- These modern warships shall also give an extended Indo-Pacific capability to the Indian Navy against an ever growing fleet of Chinese submarines.