Indian Navy Ordered Two 7,500-Ton Ships With British Submarine-Rescue Systems

Rubric: World, Industry

On September 20, India’s Hindustan Shipyard Limited (HSL) tied a contract with the national navy for two diving support ships, reported the company’s press service. The ships will have British submarine-salvage systems with deep-sea rescue submersibles. This means Delhi’s waiving possible procurement of Russian Igor Belousov-class rescue ships equipped with Bester submersibles, an informed insider told Mil.Press Today.

HSL won in the relevant tender late in 2017. The contract costs 156 mln USD. The first ship is to be delivered in three years, and the second one - in four years.

Sea trials of DASR-650 rescue system for Indian Navy

The shipyard’s director, Rear Admiral Sarat Babu said the company would engage outside advisors to master sophisticated technologies required for building of that kind of ships. Also, he promised to complete the order on time.

So far, it is unknown who will design the ships’ project. Their displacement is 7,650 tons, length is 118 meters. The ships will be equipped with a dynamic positioning system, a gas blending system for diving operations, decompression systems, different types of submersibles and a helipad. Vishakhapatnam and Mumbai will be homebases for the new ships.

Being part of the 3-gen subs salvage system, the deep-sea rescue submersibles have been already ordered from British James Fisher Defence. The corresponding contract costs about 270 mln USD and was signed in 2016. The submersibles will rescue the damaged submarines crews at the depths down to 650 meters. The first rescue vehicle, presumably DSAR-650, was delivered to Mumbai on April 18; the second one is expected to arrive by the year end.
Andrei Frolov, chief editor at Arms Export magazine, told Mil.Press Today that India’s refusal to purchase Russian submarine rescuers had been expected. As for him, Indian Navy considered Russia’s offer carefully, though finally chose another option. Perhaps, such selection is related to Delhi’s procuring submarines in Germany and France.

For reference

Russia offered to export rescue ships based on Project 21300 (Delfin-type) in March 2016. In August, the lead and yet the only built ship of this type, Igor Belousov, visited India.

In November, United Shipbuilding Corporation (USC) reported on possible export of Bester underwater rescue vehicles. Currently, USC offers potential foreign customers a Project 21301 rescue ship completed with submarines. Moreover, Russia would modernize the Delfin-type rescuer depending on the requirements of a particular navy.