New Delhi(web team): With India's sea war-horse INS Viraat to be decommissioned next year after being in service for over 50 years, the country's navy is currently dependent on the 44,000 ton destroyer INS Vikramaditya only.

It is thus opportune that the depleted force on Sunday will undock its largest destroyer, the 73,000 tonne INS Vishakhapatnam at Mazagon Dock Limited in Mumbai.

To be inducted in 2018, this will be the first of the four follow-up class ships of the Indian navy's stealth destroyer (Project 15 B). The rest of the ships will be inducted at the interval of two years each, vice-admiral AV Subhedar, Controller of Warship Production and Acquisition told reporters here.

The total cost of the project is Rs29,600 crores.

Designed by the Indian Navy's in-house organisation, directorate of naval design, INS Vishakhapatnam is 65 percent indigenous which is significantly higher as compared to its predecessors.

Besides, unlike Kolkata class destroyers, it will have a full-fledged Total Atmosphere Control System (TAC) which means significantly improved capability to operate in nuclear, biological and chemical atmosphere.

"Except in the machinery compartment, the ship will have a nuclear, biological and chemical filters for the air getting inside," Subhedar said. This will provide more safety to the ship's crew. The ship is designed for a complement of 50 officers and 250 sailors.

While its firing arch will be expanded, as an enhanced stealth technique, sonar of the ship will be bow -mounted and ship's bridge layout will be revised to ensure difficult detection by enemy radars.

Senior navy officials said that the ship is one of the few warships in the world to have a multi--function surveillance threat alert radar (MF-STAR) to provide target data to long range surface to air missile (LRSAM) systems.

INS Vishakhapatnam will be equipped with 8 Brahmos missiles and will have the same Ukrainian-built Zorya gas turbines as that of the Kolkata class destroyers.

Improved capability to operate
The total cost of the project is Rs29,600 crores. Designed by the Indian Navy's in-house organisation, directorate of naval design, INS Vishakhapatnam is 65 percent indigenous which is significantly higher as compared to its predecessors. Besides, unlike Kolkata class destroyers, it will have a full-fledged Total Atmosphere Control System (TAC) which means significantly improved capability to operate in nuclear, biological and chemical atmosphere.

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