India’s ATV SSN Submarine Project

SSN Akula Class

India’s ATV (advanced technology vessel) program to build a nuclear-powered submarine began in 1974, and became a serious effort in 1985. The Federation of American Scientists’ December 1996 document “The Indian Strategic Nuclear Submarine Project: An Open Literature Analysis” remains one of the best single open sources on India’s program. Unfortunately, it was compiled over a decade ago and has become rather dated.
Meanwhile, even if one omits the problem-plagued Type 091 Han Class nuclear-powered attack submarines (SSN) and old, updated-Romeo Type 035 Ming Class SSKs, China’s attack sub force is still projected at about 30 subs by 2010, including 4 Type 093 Shang Class SSN nuclear powered attack subs and 8 Kilo (Project 636) & Advanced Kilo Class (Project 877) diesel-electric SSKs. In contrast, India is likely to have just 10-16 Scorpene, Kilo, and Type 209 Class SSKs of its own by that time, plus any nuclear fast attack submarines in its service.
More and more sources were claiming that the Akula Class boat INS Chakra would be operational as a training vessel by 2009. But a deadly accident during K-152 Nerpa’s sea trials may delay that schedule – and cost India more. Meanwhile, a Reuters artice illustrates growing official acknowledgement of the deal…

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