The world’s largest and most powerful destroyers and aircraft carriers

In light of the Japanese Maritime Self-Defence Force launching the “flat top destroyer” Izumo, the Telegraph has produced as list of the world’s largest and most powerful destroyers and aircraft carriers.

Izumo-class destroyer Officially labelled as a destroyer, it will have a flat top that will function as a flight deck for helicopters. The vessel has been criticised as a thinly veiled attempt to boost the country’s military capabilities. Currently Japan is limited by its constitution to self-defence only, but rising tensions with China has led to fears of an escalation of a dispute over island. Japanese officials have insisted the ship will be used to assist humanitarian missions and large scale evacuations following events like the 2011 tsunami. The vessel has not been officially named but it has been dubbed Izumo after the armoured cruiser of the Imperial Japanese Navy, which was sunk in an air attack in 1945.
Operated by: Japanese Navy
Number in fleet: 1 with two more planned
Length: 820ft
Displacement: 27,000 tons Maximum speed: 30 knots
Crew: 970 Weapons: 14 helicopters and anti-submarine warfare
Picture: AP Photo/Kyodo News

Yamato-class battleship
Although currently resting on the bottom of the ocean off the south of Kyushu, Japan, the Yamato is the biggest battleship ever built and dwarves Japan’s new Izumo destroyer. Commissioned just a week after the attack on Pearl Harbour in 1941, she was the flagship of the Japanese Combined Fleet. She only ever fired her massive main guns in one battle at enemy surface targets in the Battle of Leyte Gulf in 1944. She was eventually sunk in 1945 after being attacked by US aircraft.
Operated by: Japanese Combined Fleet
Number in fleet: 2
Length: 862ft
Displacement: 70,000 tons
Maximum speed: 27 knots
Crew: 2,332
Weapons: 9 x 46cm guns, 12 x 155mm guns and 12 x 127mm guns. Seven aircraft

Nimitz-Class nuclear-powered aircraft carrier
Currently the biggest warship in operation in the world. Capable of operating for over 20 years without being refuelled, the aircraft carriers are expected to have a service life of over 50 years. The first in the class, the Nimitz became mired in controversy shortly after entering service when following a fatal aircraft crash on deck, a forensic investigation revealed some of the personnel involved tested positive for marijuana. This led to the mandatory drug testing of all service personnel. Commissioned in 1975, the Nimitz-class vessels are due to be replaced by the even bigger Gerald R. Ford-class aircraft carrier in around 2015.
Operated by: United States Navy
Number in fleet: 10
Length: 1092ft
Displacement: 100,000 tons
Maximum speed: 30 knots
Crew: 5,000
Weapons: 85-90 bomber/fighter aircraft, missile defence systems
Picture: AP

Admiral Kuznetsov-class aircraft carrier
This beast was originally commissioned in 1990 as the flagship for the Soviet Navy in 1985 and has gone through a number of refits. She was due to have a sister ship called Varyag, but it was never completed. Instead the Ukraine, where the vessel was being built, sold the hull to China, who completed it themselves.
Operated by: Russian Navy
Number in fleet: 1
Length: 1,001ft
Displacement: 55,000 tons
Maximum speed: 29 knots
Crew: 2,356
Weapons: 52 aircraft, 60 rockets and 192 missiles
Picture: Royal Navy

Liaoning aircraft carrier
Purchased by the People’s Republic of China at an auction, this is the aircraft carrier the Varyag should have been. She was sold in 1998 under the pretext that it would be used a floating casino – many other former Soviet carriers have ended up as theme parks. Lacking engines, a rudder and operating systems, the Varyag was towed to a navy shipyard where it was given a refit, renamed the Liaoning and entered service in 2012.
Operated by: People’s Liberation Army Navy
Number in fleet: 1
Length: 999ft
Displacement: 66,000 tons
Maximum speed: 32 knots
Crew: 2,626
Weapons: 30 aircraft, 24 helicopters, 60 rockets and 192 missiles
Picture: AFP/GettyImages

INS Vikramaditya
This is another former Soviet vessel that has found a new life. After being decommissioned by the Russian Navy in 1996 for being too expensive to operate, it was purchased by India for around £1.5 billion and was given a refit. Having completed sea trails it is due to enter service in October this year. It is named after a 1st century BC emperor of Ujjain, India. As part of the refit she now has accommodation for 10 female officers and has been fitted with a water desalination plant.
Operated by: Indian Navy
Number in fleet: 1
Length: 928ft
Displacement: 45,400 tons
Maximum speed: 32 knots
Crew: 1,400
Weapons: 16 aircraft, 10 helicopters
Picture: Wikipedia/Sevmash shipyard/Alexey Popov

Charles de Gaulle nuclear-powered aircraft carrier
Named after the famous French leader, this is the largest warship in Western Europe and the only nuclear powered surface vessel outside of the United States. Following successful sea trials, she is due to enter active service later in 2013. During the vessel’s construction in 1993, it was claimed that a group of visiting engineers were British MI6 agents attempting to learn the technical details. The Guardian, which published the story, later published a denial from both the British and French governments that there been an incident.
Operated by: French Navy, Marine Nationale
Number in fleet: 1
Length: 858ft
Displacement: 42,000 tons
Maximum speed: 32 knots
Crew: 1,950
Weapons: 40 aircraft, missile defence systems
Picture: AP Photo/Franck Prevel

Wasp Class amphibious assault ship
Essentially a giant floating helicopter platform, one of these vessels is capable of transporting almost the entire US Marine Corp’s quick reaction Marine Expeditionary Unit. It has two folding aircraft elevators on the outside that move between the hanger and flight deck, which can fold inwards to allow the vessel to pass through the Panama Canal.
Operated by: United States Navy
Number in fleet: 8
Length: 831ft
Displacement: 40,500 tons
Maximum speed: 22 knots
Crew: 1,208 crew and 1,894 Marines
Weapons: 6 vertical take off aircraft, 24 helicopters, missile defence systems
Picture: AP Photo/Andrew Medichini

Invincible class aircraft carrier
Although far down the list in terms of the world’s biggest warships, this is the Royal Navy’s largest currently in operation. Brazil, Italy and Spain all have larger aircraft carriers, but when the new Queen Elizabeth-class aircraft carrier comes into service in 2018, it will leave Britain with the second biggest warship in the world, behind the US.
Operated by: Royal Navy of Great Britain
Number in fleet: 3
Length: 686ft
Displacement: 22,000 tons
Maximum speed: 28 knots
Crew: 1000 crew and 500 marines
Weapons: 22 aircraft and anti missile systems
Picture: Royal Navy

Sejong the Great class destroyer
Possibly the best named class of ship in operation at the moment and the biggest destroyer after the new Izumo class, it is named after the fourth king in the Joseon Dynasty of Korea, who is credited with creating the Korean alphabet. These guided missile destroyers are the biggest of their kind in operation in the world at the moment, but are set to be out-classed by the US Navy’s new Zumwalt-class stealth destroyer, which will use electric motors and carry advanced weaponry, when it completed sometime in 2015.
Operated by: Republic of Korea Navy
Number in fleet: 3
Length: 541ft
Displacement: 11,000 tons
Maximum speed: 30+ knots
Crew: 400
Weapons: 1 5 inch naval gun, 16 anti-ship missiles, 32 cruise missiles and 6 torpedoes. Two helicopters
Picture: US Navy

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/picturegalleries/howaboutthat/10228104/The-worlds-largest-and-most-powerful-destroyers-and-aircraft-carriers.html

INS Viraat (HMS Hermes) to remain in service until 2018

An interesting rumour from the subcontinent:

Her keel was laid at Vickers (Barrow) on 21 June 1944. Think about that for a minute. Nineteen forty four. By 2018, that’s going to be 74-years. They certainly don’t build them like that any more!

INS Viraat, the oldest aircraft carrier in service anywhere in the world.

HMS Hermes, as she was during the Falklands War, 1982.

New Admiral Grigorovich class frigate laid down at Kaliningrad

The Admiral Grigorovich-class (Project 11356) frigate is a modified Burevestnik-class (Project 1135) frigate, a long-established class of general purpose frigates which has already seen 3 iterations at the Krivak, Krivak II and Krivak III. The Russian-built Talwar-class frigate (4000 tons, 30 knots) supplied to the Indian Navy provides the base design for the Project 11356.

Russia Lays Down New Frigate for Black Sea Fleet

Russia Lays Down New Frigate for Black Sea Fleet

KALININGRAD, July 13 (RIA Novosti) – The Yantar shipyard in Russia’s Baltic exclave of Kaliningrad has launched construction of a new Project 11356 frigate for the Russian navy, local media reported.

The official ceremony, attended by Deputy Commander of the Baltic Fleet, Rear Admiral Sergei Popov, was held Friday, according to Baltic Reporter online news portal.

The Admiral Butakov is the fourth in a series of six Project 11356, or Admiral Grigorovich-class, frigates for delivery to the Black Sea Fleet between 2014 and 2016 under a contract with the Defense Ministry.

The lead warship in the series, the Admiral Grigorovich, was laid down in December 2010, the second, the Admiral Essen, in July 2011 and the third, the Admiral Makarov, in February 2012.

The Project 11356 frigates, displacing 3,850 tons are designed for anti-ship and anti-submarine warfare on the high seas, and for anti-aircraft operations, both independently and as an escort ship.

The ships are armed with an eight-cell launcher for Kalibr and Klub (3M54E) anti-ship and surface-to-surface missiles, a 100-mm main gun, Kashtan gun/missile close-in air defense systems, Shtil vertical-launch air defense missile systems, two torpedo tubes, an anti-submarine rocket system and a Ka-28 or Ka-31 helicopter, according to globalsecurity.org and rusnavy.com.

http://en.ria.ru/military_news/20130713/182213396/Russia-Lays-Down-New-Frigate-for-Black-Sea-Fleet.html

Indian military support for Mauritius counterbalances China’s global powerplay

Mauritius does not have a standing military.

The Mauritius Police Force has a 1,500-strong Special Mobile Force which has paramilitary training (provided by the United Kingdom and India) and a 500-strong Coast Guard division with a small number of patrol boats. The CGS Vigilant (an STX Canada Marine PV-75 OPV) is the Coast Guard’s largest vessel.

India ‘gifts’ military equipment to Mauritius

NEW DELHI: As part of the overall policy to build robust maritime linkages with Indian Ocean Region countries to counter China’s widening arc of influence, India has gifted naval aircraft spares and engines to Mauritius.

The Indian Navy handed over the military equipment to the National Coast Guard of Mauritius at Port Louis on Friday evening. The ceremony, held on board Indian warship INS Sukanya, saw high commissioner T P Seetharam handing over three new Islander aircraft engines and critical spares to Dr Arvin Boolell, minister of foreign affairs, regional integration and international trade of the Republic of Mauritius. Speaking on the occasion, Dr Boollel thanked India for the gesture and reiterated the longstanding cooperation between the two countries.

“The consignment of spares will assist NCG Mauritius in keeping its vital air assets operational to patrol their expansive maritime Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) against piracy and poaching as well as aid search and rescue operations,” said an official.

In addition to providing aircraft and aircraft spares, the over three decades old Indo-Mauritian defence relationship includes co-operation in hydrography, supply of patrol vessels and provision of training to Mauritian personnel. The spares were carried by INS Sukanya, which is on a deployment to undertake EEZ surveillance and joint patrols, along with NCG Mauritian ships.

INS Sukanya is under the command of Cdr Dushyant Purohit. During a visit to Mauritius in February this year, Indian Navy chief Admiral D K Joshi had also handed over an inshore hydrographic survey vessel to Mauritius on behalf of India.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/India-gifts-military-equipment-to-Mauritius/articleshow/21051432.cms

Indian carrier sea trials in the Barents Sea, 31-years old, 5-years late

The INS Vikramaditya is modified Kiev class aircraft carrier, formerly the Admiral Gorshkov (and the Baku before that), launched by the Soviet Navy in 1982 and purchased by India in 2004 for $2.35 billion. Initially planned to enter Indian service in 2008, delivery has been plagued by delay after delay after delay. Russia now plans to hand over the carrier in October (or November… or December…) this year.

Even when handed over, it remains to be seen just how long the Indian Navy will manage to operate an aging, secondhand carrier (keel laid 1978! launched 1982!) before realizing that it’s time to look for a slightly newer replacement. If India sees itself as a (potentially) global superpower with aspirations to challenge Chinese hegemony, then a credible navy is essential. The Vikramaditya is scarcely that.

Smoke on the water – Indian carrier sails Barents

The scandalous long-await rebuilt Soviet aircraft carrier “INS Vikramaditya” steams towards the Barents Sea for what Russia hopes will be final sea trails before New Delhi takes over the steer.

The huge aircraft carrier sails out of Severodvinsk where she has been for repair since the boilers onboard suffered severe problems during last summer’s sea trails in the Barents Sea. The aircraft carrier now sails northbound the White Sea, heading for the areas outside the entrance to the Kola Bay in the Barents Sea where the Russian Northern fleet normally has its exercises.

“INS Vikramaditya” will over the next two months be put through stringent tests, hopefully with better results than last summer. If all goes well, the Indian flag will be hoisted by early autumn and the vessel will sail towards India. Last summer’s failure was when the fire-brick lining made of ceramic in the boilers was damaged when the vessel hit top speed of 30 knots. The Sevmash yard in Severodvinsk now assures that the problems are fixed.

Originally, “INS Vikramaditya” was supposed to be delivered in 2008 and the (so far) six years delay is seen as an embarrassing torn in Indian, Russian military hardware cooperation.

Indian Navy commissions sixth Russian-built frigate

The Indian Navy has commissioned its sixth Talwar-class frigate, the INS Trikand (F51).

The Talwar-class is a modified Krivak III (Project 11356) frigate, built for the Indian Navy in Russian shipyards. The Trikand was built the Yantar shipyard in Kaliningrad, Russia and will be equipped with the BrahMos cruise missile.

The Trikand is the last of a 6 ship batch of Krivak III frigates, however Indian and Russia are currently negotiating for the purchase of Krivak IV frigates. Whether these will be built in Russia or under-licence at an Indian shipyard is not known.

India inducts new power-packed stealth frigate INS Trikand

Rajat Pandit, TNN | Jun 29, 2013, 07.07 PM IST

NEW DELHI: In tune with its operational drive to turn “stealthy” because surprise and deception are crucial in modern-day warfare, the Navy inducted its latest guided-missile stealth frigate INS Trikand on Saturday.

INS Trikand is the last of the six stealth frigates ordered from Russia. The Navy had earlier inducted three 4,000-tonne Talwar-class stealth frigates ( Talwar, Trishul and Tabar) from Russia in 2003-2004.

Then, impressed by the punch the frigates packed, India ordered another three (Teg, Tarkash and Trikand) under a $1.15 billion contract inked in 2006.

On Saturday, Navy vice chief Vice admiral R K Dhowan commissioned INS Trikand at a ceremony at Kaliningrad in Russia, which was also attended by the Indian ambassador Ajai Malhotra and other top Indian and Russian officials.

“Her sister ships INS Teg and INS Tarkash were commissioned last year and are now undertaking operations as part of the Western Fleet,” said an officer. INS Trikand carries a state-of-the-art combat suite, which includes the supersonic 290-km BrahMos missile system, Shtil advanced surface-to-air missiles, an upgraded A-190 medium range gun, an electro-optical 30-mm close-in weapon system, anti-submarine weapons such as torpedoes and rockets and an advanced electronic warfare system.

“The weapons and sensors are integrated through a combat management system ‘Trebovanie-M’, which enables the ship to simultaneously neutralise multiple surface, sub-surface and air threats,” said the officer.

The ship also incorporates “innovative” features to reduce its radar, magnetic and acoustic “signatures” to ensure it is relatively difficult to detect by enemy radars. Powered by four gas turbines, the frigate is capable of speeds in excess of 30 knots. “The ship, commanded by Captain Ajay Kochhar with a crew of 300 officers and sailors, can also carry an integrated Kamov-31 helicopter suited for airborne early warning roles,” he said.

India, of course, is also building its own stealth frigates. Three Shivalik-class frigates, built at Mazagon Docks (MDL), have already been inducted by the Navy. Then, there is an over Rs 50,000 crore plan on the anvil to construct seven advanced stealth frigates, with all weapon and missile systems under the hull for a lower radar “signature”, in a programme called Project-17A.

The project will be shared between MDL at Mumbai and Garden Reach Shipbuilders and Engineers (GRSE) at Kolkata.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/India-inducts-new-power-packed-stealth-frigate-INS-Trikand/articleshow/20832834.cms