The launch ceremony was planned to be conducted on 17th January, but it was postponed due to the heavy snow in Istanbul.
Turkey’s President, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, emphasized the importance of indgenization in defence industry during his speech at the ceremony. He critised the direct and indirect sanctions imposed to Turkey and outlined the indigenous products developed by the Turkish Defence Industry. He also promulgated the efforts and talks on the indigenous Aircraft Carrier which will strengthen Turkish Navy extraordinarily.
Head of Turkish Defence Industry, Prof. Ismail Demir clarified the blurred subjects about the future TCG Istanbul during his speech. He announced that an indigenous vertical launch system named “MDAS” which is currently under development, will be fitted to the Istanbul frigate, the ship will be equipped with indigenous anti-ship missile “Atmaca” and locally made close-in weapon system “Gokdeniz” as well.
The first steel of the future TCG Istanbul was cut on January 19, 2017 at Istanbul Shipyard which is responsible for the construction of the prototype. The Turkish Navy had planned to commission the first ship of the project in 2021, but the deadline of the delivery has been extended to 2023 due to the latency at assigning a main contractor.
The first ship of the project is dubbed as “TCG Istanbul”, the sisterships will be named as TCG Izmir, TCG Izmit and TCG Icel as well. The sisterships will be constructed at private shipyards which are not designated yet.
About I-Class Frigate
The I-class Frigate Program was launched to construct four frigates to replace aging YAVUZ-class Frigates in mid 2020s. Developed under the MILGEM indigenous warship program, the Istanbul-class is an enlarged variant of the Ada-class anti-submarine corvette. The I-class Frigates will have around 50% increased fuel capacity and operational/sailing range capability compared to Ada-class Corvettes.
The I-class frigates have the configuration in order to conduct detection, determination of position, classification, identification, destruction of the target and NGFS. The I-class Frigate is designed to conduct maritime surveillance and patrol operations, inspection and surveillance of EEZ besides preventing potential threat.
I-class Frigate weapons
In accordance with the requirements of the Turkish Navy, the I-class frigates will be equipped with the following weapon systems:
- 16-cell MDAS indigenous VLS (a total of 64 surface-to-air missile, type of the missiles are not specified yet)
- 4×4 SSM launch canisters (Atmaca)
- 76 mm Super Rapid Gun
- Aselsan Gokdeniz CIWS
- 2 x 25 mm Aselsan STOP machine gun
- HIZIR Torpedo Countermeasures System
I-class Frigate sensors
In accordance with the requirements of the Turkish Navy, the I-class frigates will be equipped with the following sensor systems:
- Indigenous 3D search radar
- ASELSAN ALPER LPI Surface Radar
- AKREP (AKR-D Block B-1/2) Fire Control Radar
- ASELSAN Yakamos or Fersah Hull Mounted Sonar
- ASELSAN Piri IRST
- SeaEye-AHTAPOT EO Reconnaisance and Survellience System
- ASELSAN ARES 2N ESM and AREAS 2C ECM
I-class Frigate specifications
- Dimensons (length: 113.2 m, beam : 14.4 m, draugth: 4.05 m)
- Displacement : 3,000 tons
- Speed : Max: 29+ kts, Economic: 14 kts
- Range with economic speed : Around 5,700 nautical miles
- Main Propulsion: CODAG, two MTU 20V 4000 M93L diesel engines (driving two shafts) and a LM2500 gas turbine (in CODAG configuration)
- Power Generation: 4 x diesel generator
- Helicopter: Capacity to carry 2 x S70 Seahawk helicopters (One in the hangar and one on the platform)
- 2 x Rigid Hull Inflatable Boats (RHIB)
- Unconditional operations at sea state 5
- Minimum 15 days of operational capability without replenishments
- Complement : 123