BAE Systems has made an offer of a customised Queen Elizabeth Class (QEC) aircraft carrier to the Indian Navy during Langkawi International Maritime and Aerospace Exhibition, LIMA-2019.
“The company has held talks with the Indian Navy about the potential for a Military Off the Shelf (MOTS) derivative of the Royal Navy’s 65,000-tonne Queen Elizabeth Class design,” BAE Systems said at LIMA-19, according to report by Australian Defence Magazine.
He adding that “the design is adaptable to offer either ski-jump or catapult launch and can be modified to meet Indian Navy and local industry requirements.”
BAE Systems is offering the Queen Elizabeth design for the Navy's second Indigenous Aircraft Carrier (IAC-2) project. IAC-1 is a 44,000 tonne carrier expected to be named the INS Vikrant. It is slated to begin sea trials by early 2020.
India had been planning to build a new 65,000 tonne carrier, INS Vishal, a conventionally-powered carrier that is currently in the design phase. It will be built at the Cochin shipyard.
“It is a near match to the Indian Navy’s requirement for a 65,000-tonne carrier with Integrated Full Electric Propulsion [IFEP], that could be constructed under the country’s ‘Make in India’ program,” he said.
India currently has one 45,000 tonne former Soviet Kiev-class Admiral Gorshkov in service, now known as the INS Vikramaditya, which accommodates embarked MiG-29K fighters and helicopters.