New Delhi, Oct 19: INS Arihant, India's first indigenous nuclear submarine on Tuesday was inducted in Indian navy, though Defence Ministry has maintained silence over the same. Navy and Defence officials believe that such silence was "customary" as the project is 'top secret'.
Sources say that even the Navy is not aware of the submarine's movements and locations, which are decided by the orders from the highest level.
"Its mission is to be a nuclear deterrent. Everything to do with the submarine will be a secret. Its movement, position and location will not even be known to the Navy," Navy chief Admiral Arun Prakash (retired) said.
Here are the main features of INS Arihant.
Submarine which can carry ballistic missiles
Arihant is a 6,000 tonne nuclear propelled submarine.
It is a SSBN (ship submersible ballistic, nuclear submarine), or a submarine that can carry ballistic missiles with nuclear warheads.
Built with significant Russian assistance
Its design is based on the Russian Akula-1 class submarines and its 83mw pressurised water reactor has been built with significant Russian assistance.
On July 26, 2009, on Vijay Diwas, the anniversary day of Kargil War victory, Arihant was launched into the water at the ship-building centre in Visakhapatnam.
Sea trials started in December 2014
In 2013, the nuclear reactor of the submarine went 'critical'.
The sea trials started in December 2014. It was declared fit for operations in February 2016, and quietly inducted in the Indian Navy later.
Nuclear submarine is part of Indian Navy's ATV project
Arihant is part of Indian Navy's secretive Advanced Technology Vessel (ATV) project, under the supervision the Prime Minister's Office and involving agencies and establishments such as the DRDO, the Department of Atomic Energy, the Submarine Design Group of the Directorate of Naval Design, besides companies such as L&T.
The missile is named after former President Abdul Kalam
In April, the submarine test fired nuclear capable ballistic missile K-4.
The missile is named after former President and scientist A.P.J. Abdul Kalam.
INS Arihant can carry 12 K-15 missiles
Arihant has four vertical launch tubes, which can carry 12 K-15 missiles or four larger K-4 missiles.
Completes India's nuclear triad
INS Arihant completes India's nuclear triad - capability of firing nuclear weapons from land, air and sea.