Turkey Likely Supplied Ukraine with Laser-Guided TRLG-230 Missiles Earlier This Year

In an article titled ‘The Stalwart Ally: Turkey’s Arms Deliveries To Ukraine’ last week, Open-source intelligence (OSINT) defense analysis website Oryx claimed that Turkey delivered a large number of TRLG-230 precision-guided missiles to Ukraine earlier this summer. Later, two unnamed sources close to the subject confirmed the news reported by Oryx in a statement to Middle East Eye. According to sources, they do not have detailed information on the supply of equipment, but approximately 50 TRLG-230 missiles have been sent to Ukraine. According to another source, up to 200 missiles may have been delivered thus far. Also, one of Oryx’s executives, analyst Stijn Mitzer, told Middle East Eye that Turkey was the first country to deliver such equipment to Ukraine, even before the US supplied the HIMARS MLRS systems that arrived in June. These sources did not reveal whether the equipment in question was purchased under a contract between Ukraine and Roketsan or whether it was donated by Turkey.

Following the news, the first video allegedly showing the TRLG-230 missile’s use in Ukraine was shared on social media. The black and white clip shows the TRLG-230 missile integrated into a multi-barrel rocket launcher system being fired in the middle distance. However, instead of firing multiple shots, the system fires a single shot. For these reasons, some users claim that the TRLG-230 footage was allegedly shot during the Nagorno-Karabakh War and the launcher actually belongs to Azerbaijan. In contrast, the majority of users insist that the footage was shot in Ukraine.

ROKETSAN’s Multiple Barrel Rocket Launcher Weapon System / From Roketsan

The TRLG-230 Missile is a laser-guided version of the battlefield-proven TRG-230 Missile. In May 2020, Roketsan began work on the development of the TRLG-230 Missile. Company design activities were completed quickly, and prototype production began in June. On July 2, 2020, the Sinop Test Center hosted the first test firing as part of the integration of the laser seeker into the TRG-230 Missile System. Two days after the first test fire, the missile successfully completed the second test fire by hitting a target off the coast of the Black Sea under more difficult conditions. Roketsan released the first footage of the missile’s test fire on August 30, 2020. During the same time period, the TRLG-230 missile was exported to Azerbaijan and used in the second Nagorno-Karabakh War alongside Bayraktar TB2 drones.

A Laser-Guided TRLG-230 Missile being launched / From Roketsan

The TRLG-230 Missile‘s Global Positioning System, Inertial Navigation System, and Laser Seeker enable effective hits with pinpoint accuracy against high-priority targets within a range of 20 – 70 km. With a diameter of 230 mm and a weight of 210 kg, the TRLG-230 Missile carries a 42 kg warhead with an effective radius of 55 meters. The missile has a maximum circular error probability (CEP) of 2 meters and can be adapted to various types of platforms via appropriate interfaces with ROKETSAN’s Multiple Barrel Rocket Launcher Weapon System. Military ports and airports, assembly areas (vehicle and/or personnel), targets detected with high accuracy, logistics facilities, artillery and air defense systems, command, control, and communication systems are among the potential targets of the TRLG-230, which is fired at the target by laser marking via a land platform or UAV platform.