Russia has offered to build 12 Alexandrit-E-class minesweepers for the Indian Navy at a local shipyard with a transfer of technology, TASS reported citing Russia’s state arms export agency Rosoboronexport.
According to the TASS report, Russia made its offer at a meeting of the 19th India-Russia Inter-Governmental Commission on Military and Military Technical Cooperation on Nov. 6. The twelve new minesweepers were offered to be built under a ToT pact with India’s state-owned Goa Shipyard Limited (GSL).
Following the decommissioning of the Flight II Pondicherry-class/Karwar class minesweeper INS Kozhikode (M71) on April 13 this year, the Indian Navy is without dedicated minesweeper capability. Pondicherry-class ships are modified Soviet Natya-class minesweepers.
Project 12701 Alexandrit-E is the export designation of the Project 12700 Aleksandrit class minesweepers designed by the Almaz Central Marine Design Bureau and being built by the Sredne-Nevsky Shipyard for the Russian Navy.
A total of 40 Project 12700 ships are planned to be built for the Russian Navy. The first ship of the class, Aleksandr Obukhov, was laid down on Sept. 22, 2011, and was launched in June 2014. The ship was accepted into service on 9 December 2016.
The main feature of the Alexandrit-class vessels is the monolithic fiberglass hull shaped by vacuum infusion, a modern construction method which results in a lighter hull with longer service life. The ships are designed to provide mine protection of naval bases, coastal sea areas, detect and destroy mines of all kinds, provide mine protection for ships in transit, carry out mine reconnaissance, and lay minefields.
Project 12701 Alexandrit-E Specifications:
Displacement: 890 tons
Length: 61.6 m
Beam: 10.3 m
Draft: ∼3.1 m
Propulsion & Performance
Main propulsion plant: two 2500 hp diesel engines powering two each of controllable pitch propellers (CPPs), PU-100F bow thrusters and VPK-90F/70 retractable stern azimuth thrusters.
Maximum speed: 16 knots
Range: 1500 nm
Endurance: 10 days
Complement: 44 persons
Artillery: 1 x 30 mm AK-306 close-in weapon system (CIWS)
Air defense: 8 x MANPADS
Firearms: 1 x 14.5 mm MTUP machine guns or 2 x 12.7 mm P59 machine guns
1 x GKT-2 or GOKT-1 contact sweep and 1 x SHAT-U acoustic sweep
1 x DIEZ-12700E automated system for mine countermeasures operation control
1 x LIVADIA-ME mine-detection sonar
2 x Alister 9-type Autonomous Underwater Vehicles (AUVs)
2 x K-Ster I-type Remotely Operate Vehicles (ROVs)
10 x K-Ster C-type ROVs
1 x Inspector-MK2-type MCM Unmanned Surface Vehicles (USVs)