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Indian Navy’s Project 75I submarine will be equipped with Brahmos, now China-Pak are in trouble

Moscow: India and Russia’s joint venture Brahmos Aerospace has recently developed a vertically launched submarine variant of the Brahmos missile. However, it has not yet been put into operation due to the lack of a suitable submarine with the Indian Navy. Brahmos has always been presented as a supersonic cruise missile that can be launched from land, ships, submarines and aircraft. The Indian Navy first deployed the Brahmos missile on INS Rajput on 18 November 2005. Since then, India has extensively deployed variants of the Brahmos missile launched from land, ship and air.

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Submarine variant was tested in 2013

The first test of the submarine variant of the Brahmos missile was conducted on March 20, 2013 from a submerged platform in the Bay of Bengal off the coast of Visakhapatnam. According to DRDO, “The missile flew vertically from the submerged platform for its entire range of 290 km. Following a pre-determined trajectory, the missile emerged from underwater, arced towards the designated target, accomplishing all mission objectives.” Meanwhile, a pontoon previously used to test the K-15 Shaurya missile was modified to test the BrahMos submarine variant. The arming had to be fitted in it to comfortably fit the smaller diameter BrahMos. In 2015, the submarine version reportedly conducted successful trials from a submerged pontoon.

Deployment of BrahMos on Project 75I submarines

The submarine variant of BrahMos was developed keeping in mind the acquisition of submarines in the Indian Navy under Project 75I (India). The submarine-launched variant was developed to such an extent that it was independent of the platform. Customised development for a specific platform will be undertaken by the Indian government after the submarine to be acquired under Project 75I is selected.

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What is Project 75I

Project 75I was approved in October 2014. Under this project, six submarines were to be built by an Indian shipyard with technology transfer from a foreign collaborator. In 2015, based on the recommendation of a selection committee it was decided that the procurement of Project 75I will be done under the strategic partnership paradigm. The strategic partnership model (SPM) aims to enhance indigenous capabilities by promoting collaboration between Indian private companies and foreign original equipment manufacturers (OEMs). Under this SPM, Indian firms shortlisted by the MoD (Ministry of Defence) locally manufacture fighter jets, helicopters, armoured vehicles and submarines in partnership with foreign OEMs.

What are the terms of Project 75I?

According to media reports, the qualitative requirements (QR) for the Project 75I submarine platform include Air Independent Propulsion (AIP) and land-attack capability (at least 12 LACMs with a 500-km range). This is in addition to the Land Attack Cruise Missile (LACM) capability, Anti Shipping Cruise Missile (ASCM) capability sought by the Indian Navy. It is reported that the Indian Navy wants the land-attack capability to be based on a submarine section, equipped with vertically launched BrahMos missiles, to enhance the overall firepower of the boat.