Head of the Turkish Defence Industries Presidency (SSB), Ismail Demir, announced the delivery on Twitter on 04 August 2022. After delivery, the drone inventory of the Turkish Navy increased to 21, three Aksungur UCAVs, ten TB2-BAYRAKTAR UCAVs, four ANKA-S UAVs, and four ANKA-B UAVs.
“We continue our deliveries. Recently, we’ve delivered another Aksungur UAV to the Turkish Naval Forces Command.”
Ismail Demir, Head of SSB
With its large payload capacity, Aksungur can undertake continuous multi-role intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance, and assault missions and give operational flexibility outside the line of sight with its SATCOM payload. Due to its high endurance of flying there is a major expectation from Aksungur UCAV to boost the Turkish Navy’s reconnaissance capabilities.
Turkish Aerospace has currently been working on delivering Anti-submarine Warfare (ASW) capability to Aksungur. After completing the project, Aksungur will launch and monitor sonobuoys and share the information gained from sonobuoys with other ASW assets in the area. The exact timetable is yet to be known; according to the statements of TAI officials at different times, TAI expects to carry out the actual sonobuoy launch in the first half of 2022. If TAI’s goal is met, Aksungur will be the second operational UAV to launch a sonobuoy. General Atomics’ MQ-9B SeaGuardian deployed and released sonobuoys in early 2021.
Derived from TAI’s combat-proven ANKA UAV, AKSUNGUR is a Medium Altitude Long Endurance (MALE) class UAV System, capable of performing day and night Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) and strike missions with EO/IR, SAR and SIGINT payloads, and a variety of air to ground weapons. ANKA-AKSUNGUR is powered by two PD-170 twin-turbocharged diesel engines enabling long-endurance operations up to 40,000ft.
Thanks to the know-how gained from ANKA, TAI developed the Aksungur in 18 months. It made its maiden flight in 2019 and has reached 1000 flight hours since then. During trials, it carried out the live firing at 20,000ft altitude and hit the naval target successfully with a KGK-SIHA-82 guided munition at a range of 30km in the Black Sea on 25 April.
- Wing Span: 24m
- Horizontal Length: 11.6m
- Endurance: >50 hours, with 750 kg of external payload 12 hours at 25 kft
- Engine: 2 x PD-170 Dual Turbo Diesel Engine (170 Horse Power each)
- Max Takeoff Flight: 3300 kg
- Service Ceiling: >40.000 ft
Aksungur has 3 hardpoints on each wing with 500 kg, 300 kg and 150 kg capacities.
- Teber 81 and 82 guidance kits for laser-guided Mk 81 and 82 bombs
- MAM-L (16 km) and MAM-C (30 km) smart munitions
- L-UMTAS laser-guided missile
- Cirit laser-guided missile
- KGK-82 Wing Assisted Guidance Kit
- Small diameter bombs