Source : Indian Defence Analysis
|L&T BrahMos inclined Quad launcher on INS Delhi post upgrade, seen for the first time at Trincomalee port in Sri Lanka (Image Source: Twitter)|
INS Delhi with Pennant number D61 is the lead ship of her class of guided-missile destroyers of the Indian Navy. She was built at the Mazagon Dock Limited in Mumbai and commissioned on 15 November 1997. This class was among the largest warships to be designed and built in India at the time of her commissioning.
The Ship was undergoing midlife upgrades from 2018 and seen back in service in April 2022 with Sensor upgrades and new ‘Modular Launcher’ for Brahmos Missile as a replacement for KH 35E. The destroyer was back with a bang after its maiden launch of Brahmos missile. The test was carried out from the ship on 19th April 2022. The test of BrahMos from an upgraded modular launcher has once again proved the long range strike capability of BrahMos along with validation of integrated Network Centric Operations from frontline warships of Indian Navy.
|INS Delhi before the upgrade with Russian Kh-35 anti-ship missile launchers (File Photo)|
Unusual firing trajectory
In the recent pictures of INS Delhi’s we can clearly see the shining and new blazing launcher tubes after a mid-life refit. However, the launch trajectory of BrahMos from INS Delhi was different than what we have seen usually. The BrahMos missile used to launch vertically first followed by 90 degree sharp turn, whereas the one fired from INS Delhi has an raising inclined trajectory. Its because the launcher of INS Delhi. The existing 8X2 Kh-35E Uran missiles launchers used in INS Delhi are quadruple sloped launchers i.e. you can see two set of 4 launchers on either side. It has now been replaced with 2 BrahMos quadruple launchers on either side developed by L&T. These are slopped launchers rather than Vertical Launch System. The destroyer does have a VLS Battery but it is equipped with 16 with Barak-1 missiles.
The Delhi-class destroyers are guided-missile destroyers of the Indian Navy. Three ships of this class are in active service which are INS Delhi, INS Mumbai and INS Mysore. INS Delhi along with Nilgiri class frigate will form the battle group for aircraft carrier INS Vikrant. The three Delhi-class guided missile destroyers would be re-based in Visakhapatnam from the Western Command. INS Mysore & INS Mumbai are also undergoing Mid-Life Upgrade.
In order to boost the weapons system of the warship, Indian Navy had planned the modernisation of “Air Defence Complex Kashmir and Radar Fregat MAE” on P-15 (Delhi Class) of ships. The modernisation of Radar and Missile systems aim to substantially enhance the Air Defence capability of the P-15 class warship.
The Shtil-1 air defence system will replace the 9K-90 Uragan, with Fregat M2EM radar. The Kite Screech fire control system of the AK-100 is being replaced by BEL Lynx U2. The electronics warfare system will be upgraded to Ellora Mk II, with Kavach decoy launchers. Atlas Elektronik ACTAS towed-array sonar will also being installed.
Capabilities and weapons
The Delhi class destroyer has displacement of 6200 tons. Apart from BrahMos for surface attack and Barak-1 for air defense, the destroyer is equipped with 2 × Shtil SAM systems (each having 24 missiles). It is also equipped with a 100 mm AK100 gun, 2 × 30 mm AK-630M, 2 × RBU-6000 rocket launchers, Quintuple 533 mm torpedo tubes & 2 rails of depth charges. It can also host 2 × Sea King Mk 42B helicopters.