The Fourth of Class of Eight Landing Craft Utility (LCU) ships, named “L-54” built by Garden Reach Shipbuilders and Engineers Limited (GRSE), Kolkata was commissioned by Vice Admiral G.S.Pabby, AVSM, VSM, Chief of Materiel, Indian Navy at Port Blair today, 25 May 2018. Rear Admiral VK Saxena (Retd), Chairman & Managing Director, GRSE and other Senior Officials of the Indian Navy and GRSE were present during the ceremony.
The LCU Mark IV ship is designed for multipurpose amphibious operations jointly carried out by Indian Navy & Indian Army for ensuring maritime security of Andaman & Nicobar Islands in Bay of Bengal and Lakshadweep Islands in the Arabian Sea. The ship is designed to transport by sea and beach at far away islands to deploy Army Tanks & Troops.
Substantial improvements and changes to improve the ergonomics, habitability and layout of critical compartments have been implemented on this ship. This ship also has the honour of having successfully completed her weapon & sensor trials prior delivery. Normally this activity is undertaken after the ship is delivered to the Navy. This ship has been delivered with ‘Zero’ Shipbuilders’ Liabilities. The ship boasts of over 90% indigenous content which is the testimony of GRSE commitment to Make in India Initiatives of Govt. of India.
The ship is equipped with a Bow Ramp to enable Loading/Unloading of combat equipment and vehicles on beaching. The ship is designed with ballasting and de-ballasting arrangements to achieve desired trim for smooth Beaching Operations. Two Guns are also installed to provide Artillery fire support during LandingOperations.
GRSE is building 08 ships under the LCU Project of Indian Navy and the fourth ship has been commissioned today. The entire design of these LCU Mark-IV ships has been developed in-house by GRSE as per requirements specified by the Indian Navy. The ship is designed with twin propeller fixed pitch propulsion system powered by two marine diesel engines each developing 1840 KWs. Compared to the earlier LCUs operated by the Indian Navy, these ships are much bigger and have much better capabilities. The ship has modern habitability conditions with accommodation for a large contingent of Army Troops in addition to the ship’s crew.
With this commissioning, GRSE has delivered 05 warships (ASW Corvette-INS Kiltan, LCUs-L52, L53 & L54 and WJFAC-INS Tarasa) during the last 01 year. This is the highest number of warships delivered by any Indian Shipyard to Indian Navy in a year.