What it takes to fly from INS Vikramaditya

Very few countries, including India, have deck carrier pilots.

INS Vikramaditya is the only aircraft carrier in service in India. Flying from the deck of the carrier is a difficult job said Lieutenant Commander, Kothiyal, MiG 29 fighter pilot. The length of the deck is around 180 meter and the aircraft takes off at a speed of 800 km/hr.

“An aircraft carrier flight deck is one of the most exhilarating and dangerous work environments in the world. The deck may look like an ordinary land runway, but it works very differently, due to its smaller size,” Kothiyal said.

Experts say planes land and take off at a furious rate in a limited space. One careless movement, and a fighter jet engine could suck somebody in or blast somebody off the edge of the deck into the ocean.

The same difficulty persists while landing on the flight deck. The deck is around 500-feet runway speed which is not enough for high-speed jets. To decrease the speed a tail-hook is snagged to arresting wires, sturdy cables woven from high-tensile steel wire.

“There are many things which generate speed in the jet before taking off that is the reason why very few countries in the world have deck carrier pilots,” added Kothiyal.

As part of Navy Week 2016, Vice Admitral Girish Luthra, Flag Officer Commanding in Chief Western Naval Command said, “Due to the prevailing security scenaria in the region western naval command has maintained an enhanced state of readiness. Assets have been deployed to face emergency situations.”

He also said that the coastal road project and proposed Shivaji memorial in the sea doesn’t impact their operations and that Navy is pro development projects.

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