India’s New Aircraft Carrier Vikrant back on New Sea Trials
For the initial air wing, the Vikrant chose the mid-sized MiG-29K Fulcrum two-seat carrier-borne fighter. To replace the Fulcrums, the Indian Navy is looking into a more contemporary fighter. The Hal TEDBF is the leading candidate (Twin Engine Deck Based Fighter), hoping to fly within five years. Meanwhile, the Indian Navy may acquire fewer interim carrier fighters, with the Boeing F-18 Super Hornet and Dassault Rafale being mentioned as potential candidates.
The INS Vikrant is a 262-meter-long, 62-meter-wide vessel that can carry 37,500 tonnes. The ship’s top speed is 28 knots, with a range of 7,500 nautical miles at 18 knots. The INS Vikrant will receive a big personnel complement of 160 officers and 1,400 sailors. The STOBAR aircraft carrier can carry up to 30 fighters and helicopters, including Mig-29K fighter jets, Ka-31 and MH-60R multi-role helicopters.