The search giant is planning to build a submarine to hunt a giant killer whale that is threatening to wipe out the fishing industry of the Indian Ocean.
The project, known as Submarine Titan, will cost $1.5bn (£1.25bn) and will be part of the Defence Industrial Development Corporation (DIDC), the Indian government’s military-industrial development arm, said in a statement on Thursday.DIDCs plans are based on an earlier study commissioned by the Navy in 2007 that suggested the killer whale could kill as many as 2,000 people if caught in one hour.
The Indian government is considering building the submersible, called a K-Class, in the Bay of Bengal near Sri Lanka, which is known for its thriving fishing industry, and to hunt the whale off the coast of Australia.
The Indian submersibles are equipped with laser technology and sensors to monitor the whale’s movements and location.
The submersives could potentially hunt up to 20 whales a year.
It will cost around $1bn to build and the defence contractor, Mahindra Defence, has already laid out an initial design that would cost about $5bn to develop.
The submersive vessel is about 6m long and would carry two helicopters, including one that can land on water.
It would also carry the Navy’s own unmanned underwater vehicle (UUV), the Mahindras first underwater vehicle.
The company said it has been studying the project for months and is confident in its ability to overcome the challenges it faces.
“The submarine will be equipped with advanced sensors and radar to track the whales movements, including when they are in their natural habitat, and its autonomous underwater vehicle will be able to land safely on the ocean floor,” it said.
The DIC, which manages the Defence Projects Organisation (DPO), said it would look to the public for suggestions on the submarine and provide technical support for the development of the design.
The Defence Industrial and Technological Development Corporation, which runs the defence and space programmes of the state-owned Indian defence corporation, is planning a major naval upgrade, including the submarine, in 2017.
India’s military is already investing heavily in its submarine fleet and is building its own submarines to support its maritime ambitions, as well as training ships for future operations.