Turkey to test domestic unmanned warplane in 2023
By News Center
Turkey’s Baykar Technologies Company head Selcuk Bayraktar has stated that the homegrown Kizilelma (Red Apple) unmanned warplane will be tested for the first time in 2023, Yeni Shafak has reported.
“We are entering a new era in the production of unmanned aerial vehicles. Studies for Turkey's first unmanned warplane have been going on for a long time. There was a new development this week. Wings were attached to the first prototype model,” Bayraktar told Turkish NTV television.
The first flight test of the Kizilelma unmanned air warfare system in 2023 shows that the Turkish defence technologies journey has come to a critical threshold, Bayraktar stressed.
"The world prefers such [unmanned] platforms. One of the main reasons for the delay of platforms is the huge investments made in the fifth-generation aircraft. If this were not the case, the world would have switched to unmanned aerial planes 10 years ago. The cost incurred so far is so great that they cannot give up,” he underlined.
According to Bayraktar, the biggest advantage of Kizilelma is that it is unmanned and thus, it can carry out much more dangerous missions in battles. Armies can't always take the required risks since losing the pilot means losing the fight. But unmanned platforms are not like that, since they are robot planes, they can lose them much more easily, he added.
By removing the human factor, it is easy to eliminate the physiological limits that are specific to human beings. Therefore, the aircraft can perform much sharper maneuvers, Bayraktar said.
“Bayraktar Kizilelma will be Turkey's first unmanned warplane. It has been a dream for us since we built the mini UAV. We have progressed step by step in this struggle that we have been giving since the beginning of the 2000s. We see that we are getting very close to this dream," the company chief stressed.
Bayraktar stated that the speed limit will be much higher than other produced unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) and the software systems, which were used in Akinci planes, will be applied in Kizilelma as well.
“This represents roughly 18 years of technological advancement. We can create Kizilelma with the help of Akinci. It was designed to take off from Turkey's aircraft carriers, which have short runways. As a result, the course of battle history will be altered. Platforms on a national scale are critical to our freedom. Otherwise, you'll never be able to claim to be in command,” Bayraktar emphasized.
The aircraft, of which development studies are totally carried out by Turkish engineers and technicians using Bayraktar TB2 and Bayraktar Akinci expertise, will be effective against air targets using domestic air-to-air munitions.
The feature of having a low radar cross-section, which is regarded as one of the most critical issues in the design of manned airplanes, was also taken into account in the design of Bayraktar Kizilelma.
Kizilelma will have a take-off weight of six tons and will be capable of performing the most difficult missions owing to its low radar trace.
With a targeted payload capacity of 1,500 kilograms, the aircraft, will use munitions manufactured by Turkish experts and will be a significant power multiplier.