The commissioning for TCG UFUK (pennant number: A-591), which is identified as a “test and training ship” by Turkish officials, was announced by some Turkish media outlets and confirmed by Turk Loydu, an international classification and conformity assessment establishment that provides classification, inspection, and certification services for the ships.
Turkey did not hold a commissioning ceremony for TCG UFUK, but STM Defence, the ship’s major contractor, announced at the Naval Systems Seminar in Ankara two weeks ago that TCG UFUK would enter service by the end of November.
TCG UFUK, which can operate in tough climatic and maritime conditions, can operate in the open sea for 45 days, according to Turk Loydu who posted about the ship on its Linkedin account.
“UFUK, which is also capable of performing SIGINT and ELINT operations, was constructed in 30 blocks. The ship, which is equipped with antennas identical to those used by the ÇAFRAD radar system (A sophisticated AESA radar under development for future TF-2000 air defense destroyer), also features a helicopter platform capable of landing and taking off 10-ton class helicopters.”
Turkey’s President, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, defined TCG UFUK as “Turkey’s ears and eyes at sea” during the ship’s launching ceremony held in February 2019 in Istanbul.
“I believe the Ufuk Corvette will fill a major gap in today’s environment, which prioritizes preventive intelligence, particularly signal intelligence. The Ufuk Corvette will be Turkey’s seeing eye and hearing ear on the high seas. Because our country’s difficult geography needs not only a strong position in economics, agriculture, trade, and industry, but also in intelligence.”
Recep Tayyip Erdogan, President of Turkey
TCG UFUK delivery was designated as one of SSB’s 2021 naval project targets.
About TCG UFUK Test & Training Ship Project:
With the contract signed between the Turkish Defence Industries Presidency (SSB) and STM on December 30, 2016, the first works on the Test and Training Ship project, of which STM was the main contractor, were started in May 2017.
STM and Turkish electric company ISBIR inked a contract for four sets of 750 kVA generators to be utilized aboard the ship on May 15, 2017. Aselsan is responsible for the ship’s mission systems.
After the completion of the construction process in the Istanbul Naval Shipyard, TCG Ufuk (A-591) was launched with a ceremony held on February 9, 2019. The ship is planned to be used in the testing and training needs as well as signal and electronic intelligence missions of the Turkish Naval Forces. UFUK, designed using the hull form of MILGEM Ada Class Corvette, can sail for 45 days without interruption in severe climatic and marine conditions.
TCG UFUK has an overall length of 99.5 meters, 14.4 meters of maximum width, 2,400 tons of displacement, and 3.6 meters of draft. She has a hangar and helicopter deck to accommodate a 10-ton helicopter.