Indian Navy said it would operationalise its deep sea rescue vehicle in next two months which was acquired in the flyway condition from United Kingdom and it will also offer its services to friendly navies in the Indian Ocean region and beyond.
Indian Navy has last month tested its deep sea rescue vehicle at a depth of over 600 meters and also successfully carried out mating exercise with different kind of submarines operated by it.
Indian Navy took over five years to acquire this capability after it lost a diesel electric Kilo class submarine Sindhrakshak (Protector of Seas) off Mumbai coast in August 2013 in a tragic accident.
India aims to have two DSRVs (deep sea rescue vehicles) to be deployed on the country’s east and west coasts.
This system has a side scan sonar for locating the position of the submarine in distress at sea, providing immediate relief by way of posting emergency life support containers with the help of a remotely operated vehicle and thereafter rescuing the crew of the submarine using the DSRV itself.
In a submarine accident, rapidity of response is most crucial to safety of life.
To ensure early mobilisation, the system has been procured in a flyaway configuration which permits rapid transportation of the Rescue System from the base to the exact location of the distressed submarine by transportation using air, land and sea vessels.
Indian DSRV has the capability to rescue personnel from a distressed submarine (DISSUB) up to a depth of 650 m and it is the latest in terms of technology and capabilities.
It has been designed and supplied to meet unique requirements of our submarines by James Fishes Defence of United Kingdom.
Indian Navy has ordered two Systems which shall be based on the West and East Coast of India respectively to provide redundancy, high operational availability and early response to deal with a submarine contingency.
The rescue system has recently undergone extensive sea trials. The DSRV dived to over 666 meters, the remote operations vehicle (ROV) dived to 750 meters and the Side Scan Sonar dived to 650 meters.
Live undersea mating with different types of submarines along with transfer of personnel from submarine to DSRV has also been achieved, thereby simulating the submarine rescue.
With this capability, India has joined a select league of nations which have this unique capability and Indian Navy is now in a position to not only provide rescue cover to its own submarines but also to other friendly nations in the Indian Ocean region and beyond.
Indian Navy said: “Our vision is to emerge as a centre of regional excellence for Submarine Rescue Services in line with the stature of our great nation.”