The Turkish Naval Forces Command received the first delivery of TAI’s domestic and national Aksungur UAV, according to Defense Industry President İsmail Demir. İsmail Demir pre-empted the announcement with a tweet, saying, “We will have new good news shortly, stay tuned.”
In a follow-up tweet he said: “The domestic and national AKSUNGUR SİHA (Armed UAV) manufactured by TUSAŞ (TAI) successfully finished the tests and was delivered to the Naval Forces Command. The AKSUNGUR SİHA can carry a payload of 750 kg and has a maximum flight time of 50 hours.”
Aksungur was first unveiled at the 2019 International Defense Industry Fair (IDEF) in Istanbul, and is based on the ANKA platform, a Turkish Armed Forces UAV already in service. As a result, the Aksungur was able to be developed swiftly and at a relatively low cost.
According to the information given by TAI, The ANKA-AKSUNGUR is a Medium Altitude Long Endurance (MALE) class UAV system capable of executing day and night Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) and strike missions with EO/IR, SAR, and SIGINT payloads, as well as a range of air-to-ground weaponry. Two PD-170 twin-turbocharged diesel engines power the ANKA-AKSUNGUR, allowing for long-duration operations up to 40,000 feet.
As a weapon system, Aksungur, which has 3 weapon stations with a capacity of 500 kg, 300 kg and 150 kg on each wing, can be equipped with the TEBER-81 (Laser Guided Mk-81), TEBER-82 (Laser Guided Mk-82), L-UMTAS, MAM-L (LUMTAS Guided Missile Variant), Cirit MAM-C (Cirit Guided Missile Variant), HKG-3 (Precision Guidance Kit), KGK (82) Wing Guidance Kit and Miniature Bomb ammunition.
Technical Specifications given by TAI:
- Wingspan: 24 meters
- Horizontal length: 11.6 meters
- Height 3.1m
- Airtime: 50 hours
- Useful load capacity: 750+ kg
- Link range: 250+
TAI expects to finish a further four UAVs this year and deliver them to the navy before the end of the year. The Aksungur UAV will increase the Turkish Naval Forces’ capabilities to conduct reconnaissance-surveillance and mount aerial attacks in the Mediterranean and Aegean Sea regions by joining the 10 Bayraktar TB2s, 2 ANKA-S UAVs, and 4 ANKA-B UAVs already in the Turkish Naval Forces Command’s inventory.