Indian Navy, on Thursday, said that it achieved another historic milestone by undertaking the maiden night landing of MiG-29K on INS Vikrant, an exercise towards completing the process of making the indigenously built aircraft carrier battle ready.
“This challenging night landing trial also demonstrates the resolve, skill, and professionalism of the Vikrant crew and the Naval pilots,” a Navy spokesperson said. The event is “indicative of Navy’s impetus towards aatmanirbharta” or self reliance in defence sector, the spokesperson added.
As part of the trials, the maiden day landing of MiG-29K and the indigenous LCA (Navy) was achieved on February 6, this year. Since then, day and night landing trials of all helicopters in the Naval inventory have progressed, informed Navy spokesperson.
Also read: INS Mormugao successfully engages supersonic target to demonstrate its stealth capabilities
INS Vikrant, a 45,000-tonne aircraft carrier, was built at a cost of ₹20,000 crore and commissioned into Indian Navy last September.
Defence Minister Rajnath Singh lauded the Indian Navy for successfully completing maiden night landing trials of MiG-29K on INS Vikrant. “Congratulations to the Indian Navy for successfully undertaking the maiden night landing trials of MiG-29K on #INSVikrant,” Singh twitted.
“This remarkable achievement is a testimony to the skills, perseverance and professionalism of the Vikrant crew and Naval pilots. Kudos to them,” was his another post on the social media.
INS Vikrant, as per Navy, is presently undergoing Air Certification and Flight Integration Trials with Rotary Wing and Fixed Wing aircraft for achieving ‘Combat ready’ state at the earliest.
Landing on the floating strip requires skill that are more challenging than that required for touching down at airfields, Navy officials stated. INS Vikrant has the capacity to be equipped with 30 fixed and rotary wings platforms.