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India launches sixth Project 17A frigate

Vindhyagiri , the sixth Project 17A frigate on order for the Indian Navy, seen here at its launch ceremony. (Ministry of Defence, India)

India's Garden Reach Shipbuilders and Engineers (GRSE) has launched the country's sixth Nilgiri (Project 17A)-class guided-missile frigate.

The warship, which will be in service as INS Vindhyagiri once commissioned, was launched on 17 August into the Hooghly River, the Indian Ministry of Defence announced the same day.

Vindhyagiri is one of seven Project 17A frigates that have been ordered for the Indian Navy. The warships are being built across two Indian shipyards, with the other being Mazagon Dock Shipbuilders Limited (MDL).

The frigates are larger and heavier-armed variants of the service's Shivalik (Project 17)-class frigates, three of which are in service and were commissioned between 2010 and 2012.

MDL is building the first, third, fifth, and seventh hulls of the Project 17A programme, while GRSE is working on the other three hulls, including Vindhyagiri .

First-of-class Nilgiri was launched by MDL in September 2019, while the fifth-of-class Taragiri was launched by the same shipbuilder in September 2022.

The class has an overall length of 149 m, an overall beam of 17.8 m, and a hull draught of 5 m. It has a fully loaded displacement of 6,670 tonne and a crew complement of 226.

The frigate is powered by two General Electric LM2500 gas turbines and two MAN 12V28/33D STC diesel engines in a combined diesel or gas (CODOG) configuration. It has a top speed of 28 kt, with a range of 5,500 n mile when cruising at 16 kt.

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