DRDO is in talks with DCNS to install a DRDO-developed AIP based on hydrogen fuel cell on the last Scorpene submarine built at Mazagaon Dock under the Navy’s Project 75.
DRDO DG (Naval Systems & Materials), V. Bhujanga Rao, told The Hindu, "Our technology is proven on a land-based prototype. A submarine-based prototype plug weighing nearly 300 tonnes is now being worked on. The French MESMA AIP being offered for the Scorpenes is an old system with a steam turbine.”
He added that the DRDO AIP could be reconfigured for the submarines to be acquired under Project 75I .
DRDO is developing Air Independent Propulsion (AIP) technology for use on submarines at the Naval Material Research Laboratory (NMRL), Ambernath.
A land based technology demonstrator project is currently underway. Full scale operations of a AIP System is likely to be demonstrated by 2015.
Earlier, the Indian Navy asked MDL to equip the fifth and sixth boats with Air Independent Propulsion by fitting an additional section.
During his visit to India with French President Nicolas Sarkozy in December 2010, DCNS CEO Patrick Boissier said that if a contract were to be placed on DCNS by next year, AIP systems could be integrated into the fifth and the sixth submarines rolling out of MDL in 2018.
The four Scorpenes launched earlier could be retrofitted under an upgrade program.
IDP Sentinel members can read additional information on the Scorpene project at the link below
Project 75 Scorpene Submarines - IDP Sentinel