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Monday July 15 2024

Turkiye transfer about 150 KAAN fighters from 1st batch of production to allied countries

8 July 2024 20:41 (UTC+04:00)
Turkiye transfer about 150 KAAN fighters from 1st batch of production to allied countries

By Alimat Aliyeva

After the launch of mass production of KAAN combat aircraft – the first Turkish fighter of national production – Turkiye intends to transfer about 150 units from the first batch to the allied countries, Azernews reports.

According to the Report with reference to Star, this was stated by Mehmet Demiroglu, the new secretary general of the state aerospace company TUSAŞ, engaged in the development of 5th generation KAAN fighters.

"At the first stage, we intend to produce more than 100 units for the needs of the Turkish Air Force. Approximately the same number of fighters will be produced for friendly and allied countries. Currently, several countries are showing serious interest in KAAN. To be precise, we are talking about about 150 units. Initially, we plan to produce about 250-300 aircraft. However, the priority will remain to meet the needs of the domestic Air Force," he said.

He also stressed that after the launch of production, Turkiye will become one of the four countries in the world producing fifth-generation fighters.

"The first KAAN in the Blok-10 configuration will be ready in 2025. After that, the main test flights will begin. The tests will be completed no earlier than 2028. We plan to deliver the first 20 aircraft in 2028," Demiroglu added.

Demiroglu said that the difference between the first Blok-10 configuration and subsequent more modernized KAAN models, which are planned to be produced in the future, has not been disclosed: "However, the first batch of aircraft in the Blok-10 configuration will be several times superior to the fighters in service with the Turkish Air Force – in terms of stealth, speed, radars. For example, the AESA radar installed on KAAN [manufactured by the Turkish defense giant ASELSAN] has a longer range than the same radar installed on the F-16. With each new configuration, KAAN's capabilities will be improved."

The fifth-generation KAAN fighter is the first Turkish-made national combat aircraft, and has been under development since 2017. The prototype fighter made its first flight on February 22, 2024. Serial production is planned for 2028.

At the end of July 2023, the Ministry of Defense Industry of Azerbaijan and TUSAŞ signed a protocol on cooperation on the KAAN project. After that, in March 2024, former CEO of TUSAŞ Temel Kotil informed the media that one of the KAAN components would be manufactured in Azerbaijan.

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