The Construction Of The Multipurpose Amphibious Assault Ship TCG Anadolu Has Started

L-408 TCG Anadolu.

The model of TCG Anadolu taken during the IDEF 2015 defence exibition.

The construction of the multipurpose amphibious assault ship L-408 TCG Anadolu has started on 30th April 2016.

The ship is based on Navatia’s Juan Carlos 1 design. TCG Anadolu will be similar to SPS Juan Carlos 1 in Spanish Navy and HMAS Adelaide and HMAS Canberra in Royal Australian Navy.

During the ceremony President of Turkish Republic Recep Tayyip Erdoğan made a speech.  During his speech he stated that TCG Anadolu will be the first ship in Turkish Navy from which F-35B SVTOL planes will operate. This is the first time official declaration of the long known desire of Turkey to operate fixed wing planes from her ships. This statement also made it clear that Turkey will procure F-35B planes along with her order of F-35A planes.

In his speech Mr. Erdoğan also asked the announced delivery time of 5,5 years to be shortened to 4 years and stated that if TCG Anadolu can be delivered in 4 years, more ships –though not clearly stating which class- will be ordered.

Unlike her nears sisters in Spanish and Australian navies the Turkish ship will only have diesel engines. There will be five MAN 16V32/40 engines each creating 7.680kW and propelling the ship up to 21 knots. The range is estimated to be 9.000 nautical miles.

The ship will have one Mk-49 launcher for Rolling Airframe Missile, 2 Mk-15 Phalanx Block 1B CIWS, 5 Stabilized Gun platforms probably armed with 25mm gun for self-defence.

The ship will carry 6 F-35B Lightning II planes 4 T-129 ATAK attack helicopters 8 cargo helicopters 2 S-70B Seahawk helicopters and 2 UAVs.

The contract for this project was signed on 7 May 2015 during the IDEF 2015. The delivery scheduled for 2021 but this may be shortened.

When completed she will be the largest warship of Turkish Navy. Being the capital ship she will be the apple of the Turkish Navy. At the same the she will be the most wanted target for other navies. It is about time that other ship building projects especially about ships that will escort and protect TCG Anadolu must start. As an example, the two other navies operating similar ships have initiated AEGIS based air defence destroyers -not to anyones surprise designed in Spain- to escort their amphibious assault ships.

Turkish Navy has long been working on TF-2000 air defence destroyer program. According to preliminary plans the ship will be about 150 meters long and will have displacement between 7.000 and 8.000 tons. Her primary sensor and weapon systems are yet to be determined. Turkish defence electronics company ASELSAN is developing a phased array radar system to be used by the navy.

Large capital ships like TCG Anadolu never sail alone. They are always dispatched with a number of escorts whose main mission is to protect the capital ship no matter what the cost. The ability of current frigates of Turkish Navy which will be tasked with the protection of TCG Anadolu when she is completed may not be sufficient to counter all the treats they will face in the near  future. Therefore more advanced ships with complex sensor systemns and long range missiles are needed. And this need is getting urgent with every passing day.

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Technical specifications of TCG Anadolu.

Foreign Warship On Bosphorus in 2016 (Part 16)

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Tsezar Kunikov making a southbound passage. During the absence of Azov and Yamal, she was the most prolific one.

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Minsk returning empty from another Syrian deployment.

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Alexander Otrakovski sailing through Istanbul Strait on her way to Syria. Photo: Alper Böler.

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An empty Saratov, riding high on the water makes a northbound passage through Istanbul.

The list of the foreign warships passed through Istanbul Strait is here.

Sea Lion 2016 Search And Rescue Exercise

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Large OPV’s like SG-701 TCSG Güven here are vital for search and rescue missions in maritime domain.

Turkish Coast Guard will conduct Sea Lion-2016 Search and Rescue Exercise, between 3rd and 6th May 2016, in international waters of the Aegean Sea covered by Turkish Search and Rescue Area. Search and Rescue units from the Army, Navy, Air Force, Coast Guard and elements of Transportation, Maritime Affairs and Communications Ministry will participate in the exercise.

The aim of the exercise is to improve the co-ordination and collaboration between the military and civilian search and rescue units and co-ordination centers.

Syrian Express Deployments Taking Toll On Russian Ships?

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Russian landing ship Azov, last seen on 19th February 2016 making a northbound passage. Photo: Yörük Işık.

Turkish maritime news portal Deniz Haber Ajansı ran a story about the Russian naval exercise scheduled in the Black Sea. According to the news Russian Navy has to cancel at least the amphibious landing part of the exercise due to the fact that Ropucha class landing ships Azov and Yamal were unavailable due to malfunctions. The Turkish portal quotes Ukrainian as their source and I was not able to verify content of the story through other means. But there is no smoke without fire.

Yamal made 3 Syrian deployments in this year and she was last seen on 22th February 2016 sailing north. Whereas Azov made only 2 Syrian deployments in 2016 and she was last seen sailing north on 19th February 2016. So both of them were absent for the last 68 days. This is a long pause suggesting that there actually might be some problems with these ships.

The arduous Syrian Express deployments seems to be taking toll on the auxiliary cargo ships of the Russian Navy as well. According to 7 Feet Beneath the Keel blog half of them are in non-operational status:

“Dvinitsa-50” — operational
“Kazan-60” — non-operational; to undergo repairs – possibly until this fall – following a machinery room fire in late March
“Kyzyl-60” — non-operational
“Vologda-50” — operational
“Aleksandr Tkachenko” — non-operational; after conducting roundtrip missions in February and March, vessel pulled into Feodosiya in mid-March where it probably remains today
“Yauza” — returning to Murmansk

 

From The Archive (11)

USS Thorn in Istanbul, in an undated photo. It must be late 1990’s. She was decommissioned in 2004 and sunk as target in 2006.

New Constructions For Turkish Navy

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This photo show 4 new constructions for Turkish Navy.

The two large rescue ships TCG Işın and TCG Akın, the submarine rescue ship TCG Alemdar and the new LST, TCG Bayraktar can be seen on the above photo. They are in different phases of construction.

TCG Alemdar was first to be launched in May 2014. She was followed by TCG Işın in June 2014 and TCG Akın in September 2014. The first ship supposed to be delivered in 2015 but apparently there has been some delays in the project. These 3 ships are very complex due to the  highly technical and very specialised rescue and salvage equipment they are going to carry. The procurement and implementation of these highly complex devices is in the hands of the shipyard. Since this project is first it’s kind, some unseen problems may be natural.

TCG Bayraktar is the first of the two new landing ships Turkish Navy has ordered. She was launched in October 2015. When finished, she will carry 350 persons, 20 MBT and between 24 – 60 vehicles. The closed parking area is 1100 square meters and the open deck parking area is 690 square meters. After TCG Bayraktar was launched, the construction of the second ship TCG Sancaktar has commenced on the slipway.

 

 

Foreign Warship On Bosphorus in 2016 (Part 15)

This is a double issue as I was not able to update last week.

Russian auxiliary cargo ship Vologda-50 making a northbound passage. She is empty. Photo: Alper Böler.

Russian auxiliary cargo ship Vologda-50 making a northbound passage. She is empty. Photo: Alper Böler.

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Canadian frigate HMCS Frederection leaves the Black Sea. She spend all her 21 days allocated by Montreux Convention in the region. Photo: Alper Böler.

Romanian frigate Regina Maria returning to the Blakc Sea just after 3 days. Photo: Yörük Işık.

Romanian frigate Regina Maria returning to the Black Sea just after 3 days. Photo: Yörük Işık.

Russian landing ship Tsezar Kunikov returning empty from her Syrian deployment. Turkish coast guard and maritimie xsection of Istanbul Police Department is escortnig her as they do to all Russian ships recently.

Russian landing ship Tsezar Kunikov returning empty from her Syrian deployment. Turkish Coast Guard and maritime section of Istanbul Police Department is escorting her, as they do to all Russian ships recently.

Fully loaded, Russian landing ship Minsk mainking a southbound passage through Istanbul Strait. Photo: Yörük Işık.

Fully loaded, Russian landing ship Minsk making a southbound passage through Istanbul Strait. Photo: Yörük Işık.

Romanain frigate Regine Maria making a rare southbound passage through Istanbul. The reason of her deployment is not know.

Romanian frigate Regina Maria making a rare southbound passage through Istanbul. The reason of her deployment is not know.

Russian landing ship Saratov, loaded with trucks is heading to Syria. Photo: Yörük Işık.

Russian landing ship Saratov, loaded with trucks is heading to Syria. Photo: Yörük Işık.

Russian corvette Ze

Russian corvette Zeleny Dol returned to the Black Sea. She was deployed to Syria on 14 February 2016. She was relived by her sister Serpukhov. Photo: Serhat Güvenç.

The list of the foreign warships passed through Istanbul Strait is here.

From The Archive (10)

HMS Cardiff during her visit to Istanbul on 23rd November 1998. Note the added Mk 15 Phalanx CIWS systems installed after The Falkland War. Ironically her final destination was a scrapyard in Turkey in 2005.

From The Archive (9)

The Spanish aircraft carrier ESPS Prince of Asturias in her glory days. This photo is taken during her visit to Istanbul on 11th November 1992. She was decommissioned in 2003.

Foreign Warship On Bosphorus in 2016 (Part 14)

Russian landing ship Tsezar Kunikov and her escort TCSG-93 making a southbound passage through Istanbul.

Russian landing ship Tsezar Kunikov and her escort TCSG-93 making a southbound passage through Istanbul.

Russian auxiliary cargo ship Vologda-50 making a southbound passge through Istanbul. Photo: Yörük Işık.

Russian auxiliary cargo ship Vologda-50 making a southbound passge through Istanbul. Photo: Yörük Işık.

Russian Ropucha class landing ship Alexander Otrakovski returned from her Syrian deploymenyt. Photo: Alper Böler.

Russian Ropucha class landing ship Alexander Otrakovski returned from her Syrian deployment. Photo: Alper Böler.

Ropucha class landing ship Minks returned from her Syrian deployment. Photo: Serhat Güvenç.

Ropucha class landing ship Minks returned from her Syrian deployment. Photo: Serhat Güvenç.

Russian auxiliary cargo ship Divitsa-50 going to Syria. Photo: Alper Böler.

Russian auxiliary cargo ship Divitsa-50 going to Syria. Photo: Alper Böler.

The list of the foreign warships passed through Istanbul Strait is here.

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