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Turkish defence vendor Baykar Makina announces plans to develop 4.5-ton jet-powered UAV

The Daily Sabah reports that the Turkish defence and aerospace vendor Baykar Makina will develop a jet-powered unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) with a maximum take-off weight (MTOW) of 4,500 kg.

The announcement was made by Baykar Makina’s technical manager Selçuk Bayraktar, who also revealed that 30 Bayraktar UAVs are in service with the Turkish Armed Forces (TSK) as well as Generate Directorate of Security. The Bayraktar TB2 is serving alongside with the Turkish Aerospace Industries (TAI) Anka UAV in counter-terrorism and counterinsurgency operations in Turkey.

Notes & Comments:

The development of a jet-powered drone capable of undertaking high-risk missions, such as suppression of enemy air defence (SEAD) operations, has been one of Baykar Makina’s long-term objectives. In 2015, the company had outlined basic design objectives for such drones to a joint government-industry panel (via Mönch Turkiye). One of the proposed designs had a listed MTOW of 3,000-4,000 kg, payload of 1,000 kg, endurance of four to five hours, flight ceiling of 40,000 ft and cruise speed of Mach 0.8.

It is not known if Baykar Makina opted to continue developing that design or if it has an alternative, but the principal aim seems to allude to the development of a UAV analogous to the General Atomic Avenger. Granted, the Avenger is a significantly larger design with an MTOW of over 8,000 kg and payload of 3,600 kg. However, the basic design decisions may be similar, such as the emphasis on low detectability on radar (via a small radar cross-section and internal munitions bay).

Original Baykar jet-powered UAV proposal. Photo source: Mönch Turkiye

Through the TAI Anka and Baykar Makina Bayraktar TB2, the Turkish industry has developed several UAV-centric subsystems and munitions, including Aselsan electro-optical and infrared turrets and Roketsan MAM-C and MAM-L air-to-ground missiles. Integral to long-range UAV usage will be Turkey’s forthcoming TÜRKSAT-6A communications satellite, which will be equipped with two X-band transponders. In tandem, CTECH Bilişim Teknolojileri A.Ş. is the TSK’s principal supplier of satellite communications (SATCOM) terminals, which will make their way to the TAI Anka and future UAVs.

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  • by Abdul Basit Iqbal
    Posted September 13, 2017 4:41 am 0Likes

    PN shall seriously consider it for Maritime purposes as India is going to have UAS GUARDIANS from US. At this very initial stage, such serious endeavors will bear fruit for PN.

  • by sami shahid
    Posted September 13, 2017 6:39 am 0Likes

    Right but I think Pakistan navy should go for TAI Anka drones. PN has already bought SCAN Eagle drones so I guess Pakistan Army or Air Force should buy TAI Anka drones for the surveillance of border with Iran & Afghanistan and infact they can give a few TAI Anka drones to the Pakistan Navy too.

  • by jamshed_kharian_pak
    Posted September 13, 2017 3:12 pm 0Likes

    Armed Forces Of Islamic Republic Of Pakistan Must Support Such Great Projects Undertaking by Our Brother Turkish Armed Forces or Private Compagnies

  • by Steve
    Posted September 14, 2017 10:10 am 0Likes

    There is absolutely no point in buying anything for the eastern front or long range martitime use that is not fully stealthy. Those drones will be flying in a defended airspace. For COIN and Af/Iran border plus CPEC surveillance we can buy or make anything as long as it carries accurate weapons, has endurance and day/night capabilities. CH-5 or even Anka would do nicely.

  • by otto
    Posted September 15, 2017 3:01 am 0Likes
    Baykar working on two unmanned aerial vehicles:
    1: 4500 kg UAV (it will likely be an uav with a turboprop engine)
    2: Jet powered UAV (according to the rumors, they developed a new jet engine)

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