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The Kaveri Marine Gas Turbine (KMGT) program, aimed at powering Indian warships, is getting a new lease on life. With the successful resolution of technical issues in the core of the Dry Kaveri jet engine, the Defense Research and Development Organization (DRDO) is set to issue fresh tenders for a revamped KMGT based on this improved core.

The original KMGT, developed as a derivative of the Kaveri engine, achieved a 12MW rating – equivalent to a 16MW international offering under simulated conditions. However, prolonged testing revealed issues with the core, leading to program suspension.

Now, leveraging the advancements made in the Dry Kaveri program, DRDO plans to modify the engine core for maritime applications. This new iteration promises enhanced reliability and potentially higher power output, catering to the needs of cruisers and destroyers beyond the SNF (Rajput) class initially targeted.

This revival signifies several positive developments:

  • Addressing Core Issues: The Dry Kaveri’s success in overcoming core problems bodes well for the KMGT’s future and reduces technical risks.
  • Indigenous Power: A successful KMGT program will reduce dependence on foreign marine gas turbines, boosting India’s self-reliance in strategic sectors.
  • Enhanced Capabilities: By leveraging the Dry Kaveri core, the upgraded KMGT could offer higher power output, potentially powering larger and more advanced warships.

This renewed effort holds immense significance for India’s self-reliance in defense technology. Indigenous marine gas turbines offer significant advantages over imported options, including:

  • Reduced reliance on foreign suppliers: Developing the KMGT reduces dependence on external sources, boosting national security and economic independence.
  • Customization and adaptability: An indigenous engine can be tailored to specific needs of the Indian Navy, ensuring optimal performance and compatibility.
  • Technological advancement: The KMGT program fosters domestic innovation and expertise in gas turbine technology, propelling India’s position in this critical domain.

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