INS Sagardhwani Sets Sail for Sagar Maitri Mission-4

On October 12, the INS Sagardhwani, an oceanographic research vessel owned by the Naval Physical & Oceanographic Laboratory (NPOL) under the DRDO, embarked on a two-month-long Sagar Maitri (SM) Mission-4 from South Jetty, Southern Naval Command (SNC), Kochi.

Promoting Scientific Collaboration

  • The Sagar Maitri initiative by DRDO aims to foster closer cooperation in socio-economic aspects and enhance scientific interactions, particularly in the field of ocean research, among Indian Ocean Rim (IOR) countries.
  • Under this initiative, DRDO introduced ‘MAITRI,’ which stands for ‘Marine and Allied Interdisciplinary Training and Research Initiative.’
  • This initiative focuses on establishing long-term collaborations with IOR countries in the domain of ‘Ocean Research and Development,’ as stated by the Defence Ministry in an official statement.

A Historic Voyage

In the Sagar Maitri program, INS Sagardhwani will retrace the footsteps of INS Kistna, which participated in the International Indian Ocean Expedition during 1962-65. The mission’s goal is to establish enduring scientific partnerships and collaborations with eight IOR countries, including Oman, the Maldives, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, and Myanmar.

Previous Missions

The Sagar Maitri initiative has conducted previous missions, such as visiting Yangon (Myanmar) in April 2019, Klang (Malaysia) in August 2019, and Singapore in September 2019. These missions included one-day scientific seminars in all three countries. In February 2020, the NPOL carried out oceanographic studies in the Southern Indian Ocean as part of the third mission (SM-3).

Collaborative Research Aboard INS Sagardhwani

The current mission, SM-4, includes scientific deployments onboard INS Sagardhwani in the Northern Arabian Sea and the initiation of collaborative research programs with the Department of Marine Sciences & Fisheries at Sultan Qaboos University in Oman. These missions provide an opportunity for scientists to collaborate and build strong working relationships with their IOR counterparts studying the oceans.

INS Sagardhwani – A Symbol of Research

INS Sagardhwani, a marine acoustic research ship developed by NPOL in Kochi and constructed indigenously by GRSE Ltd, was launched in July 1994. The NPOL has been actively involved in studying the ocean environment and related fields. Over the past 25 years, the vessel has been engaged in extensive oceanic observing missions and research, making it a symbol of oceanographic research in India.



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