A Fleet Of Turkish Landing Craft Moved To The Black Sea

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TCG Ç-151. Photo: Yörük Işık. Used with permission.

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TCG Ç-155. Photo: Yörük Işık. Used with permission.

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TCG Ç-156. Photo: Yörük Işık. Used with permission.

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TCG Ç-157. Photo: Yörük Işık. Used with permission.

On 30 June 2014 a fleet of 4 landing craft was sighted moving towards the Black Sea.

TCG Ç-151, TCG Ç-155, TCG Ç-156, TCG Ç-157, the half of the 8 new LCT craft Turkish Navy has procured sailed to an unknown destination. Together they could carry up to 12 main battle tanks or up to 1000 troops.

Efes 2013 Exercise

Turkish naval and airborne units are moving towards the beachhead.

Turkish naval and airborne units are moving towards the beachhead. Photo:ntvmsnbc.com

Turkish Navy in cooperation with Turkish Army and Air Force conducted the Efes 2013 military exercise in annex to the Deniz Kurdu 2013 naval exercise.

The annual Efes exercise is always about making a forces entry to the enemy territory from the sea and from the air. This year the scenario was the same. Turkish naval units transported naval infantry units to the beaches while the air force conducted airstrikes and army helicopters provided lift and close air support.

As far as I can see, most of the new type LCT‘s of the navy which are among the fastest.

Click here for the photos.

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New LST’s with an old M-113. Photo: ntvmsnbc.com

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Photo: ntvmsnbc.com

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Photo: ntvmsnbc.com

Turkish Navy Permanently Commissions New Landing Ship

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Ç-154 the fourth ship of the fast LCT class. She is identical to Ç-151. Photo: Ahmet Güven.

Turkish Navy officially and permanently commissioned the fast landing ship Ç-151. Ç-151 is the first ship of the new LCT class of Turkish Navy.

In 2007, Undersecretariat for Defence Industries (UDI), submitted a Request for Proposal for 8 LCT’s. These new vessels were to be built in Turkey and had to be fast. From the four companies that submitted to the tender, ADİK shipyard was chosen. On June 2009, a contract was signed between UDI and ADİK for the production of the ships. The exact value of the contract was not made public but it is estimated to be around 100 million EUR. All 8 ships have been delivered to the Turkish Navy.

The construction of Ç-151, the first ship of the class of was started in January 2010 and she was launched on 2nd October 2010. She was handed over to Turkish Navy on 9th March 2012.  Ç-151 took part in the joint Turkish-Egyptian naval exercise Sea of Friendship (Bahr El Sadaka) in October 2012.

When a newly constructed ship is handed over to Turkish Navy the ship is in “temporary” commissioning  This means that during the warranty period of the shipyard the ship is not permanently commissioned in Turkish Navy. This happens after the warranty period of the shipyard expires and the Turkish Navy alone receives the responsibility of the ship.

Till August 2013 the same procedure will repeated for the remaining 7 LCT’s.

Ukrainian Naval Commander Visits Turkey

The Commander of Ukrainian Navy Vice-Admiral Yurii Ilyin Ivanovych visited Turkey as a guest of Admiral Murat Bilgel, Commander of Turkish Naval Forces.

Neither Ukrainian nor Turkish Navy made any public announcements about this visit. Instead of the PR officers in both navies we should be thanking the marketing department of ADIK shipyard for the following photos and the text. As it is a marketing text it does not answer any serious questions like why Vice-Admiral Yurii Ilyin Ivanovych was in Turkey and about what did the two commanders talked about etc.

Ukrainian Chief of Navy Vice Admiral Yurii Ivanovych Ilyin honored our Shipyard with his visit on November 17th 2012. Ukrainian Chief of Navy Vice Admiral Yurii Ivanovych Ilyin has been in a offical visit to Turkey as the special guest of Commander of Turkish Naval Forces Admiral Murat Bilgel. 

Ukrainian Chief of Navy Vice Admiral Yurii Ivanovych Ilyin has first visited AKSAZ Naval Base where he had the opportunity to visit in detail TCG Ç-151, the First of the Eight LCT (Landing Craft Tank) built by ANADOLU Shipyard during the years of 2009-2012 for the Turkish Navy Command. 

In the İstanbul part of his official visit, Ukrainian Chief of Navy Vice Admiral Yurii Ivanovych Ilyin first visited Pendik Navy Shipyard and then came to ANADOLU Shipyard, together with Turkish Vice Admiral Bülent Bostanoğlu, Commander of North Sea Region. 

Our CEO Ertuğ Yaşar and our Defense Group Coordinator Admiral (ret) Metin Poyrazlar presented to Vice Admiral Yurii Ivanovych Ilyin our shipbuilding capabilities as well as our Navy projects. 

Commander Vice Admiral Yurii Ivanovych Ilyin has shown an interest in LCTs built by our Shipyard for Turkish Navy and our Patrol Vessels design. Vice Admiral Yurii Ivanovych Ilyin and his delegation has asked technical and administrative questions about these two vessels, which were answered by both CEO Ertuğ Yaşar and Defense Group Coordinator Admiral (ret) Metin Poyrazlar. 

The Chairman of ANADOLU Shipyard, Mr. M.Faruk Ürkmez presented the models of our Shipyard’s LCT and LST designs to Vice Admiral Yurii Ivanovych Ilyin.

My Impressions From 5.Naval Systems Seminar (Part II)

Some more information and gossip from the 5th Naval Systems Seminar. Click here to read the first part on Bosphorus Naval News.

  • In November, F-511 TCG Heybeliada, the first ship of the Milgem class corvettes will leave for her first overseas deployment, to the Gulf of Aden. It is not clear at the moment if she will replace the Gabya (ex-Perry) class frigate F-492 TCG Gemlik the flagship of CTF-151 or not.
  • Towards to the end of the year the Turkish Naval Task Force will be reactivated. It is not clear where the task force will be deployed. It is possible that TCG Heybeliada may be a part of this task force.
  • Inşallah, the first 3 ships of the Coast Guards large Search and Rescue ships will be handed over by RMK to the end use before the end of 2012. This is a direct quote from Mr. Şener.
  • The first four planes from Meltem Project have been in temporary acceptance in Turkish Navy. The main contractor TAI Expects to hand all planes to Turkish Navy until the end of 2013.
  • Below are some interesting slides from various presentations from the seminar.

  • The contracts has been signed for the following projects: The design of the replenishment and support ship, the submarine rescue ship, the rescue and salvage ships, seismic research ship, modernization of SAR-33 class boats.
  • The following units has been handed over to Turkish Navy: Milgem, New Type Patrol Boats 7 units, Coast Guard intervention boats 20+ units, upgraded SAR-35 class boats 4 units, coast Guard large patrol boat 3 units, LCT’s 8 units.

  • Short term projects: Milgem S, replenishment and support ship, LCAC, conceptual design of a national submarine LPD.
  • Long term projects: TF2000, Turkish Type Fast Attack Craft, 600 tons coast guard vessel, minesweepers, training schooners.

  • Estimated cost of the all planned shipbuilding projects : 6,8 billion USD. To make a comparison the total contract value of the proceeding  naval projects is 8 billion USD.

Turkish Landing Ship Will Participate In Naval Exericse As A Sales Representative

Ç-151 TCG Ç-151 leaving her home port. Photo: ADIK

According to the ADİK shipyard’s web site the first ship of the New LCT class Ç-151 will participate to the joint Turkish-Egyptian naval exercise Sea of Friendship (Bahr El Sadaka).

In 2007, Undersecretariat for Defence Industries (UDI), submitted a Request for Proposal for 8 LCT’s. These new vessels were to be built in Turkey and had to be fast. From the four companies that submitted to the tender, ADİK shipyard was chosen. On June 2009, a contract was signed between UDI and ADİK for the production of the ships. The exact value of the contract was not made public but it is estimated to be around 100 million EUR. The production was completed right on time after 37 months.

I must confess that when I first read the Turkish Navy’s announcement about this exercise I was a surprised that 2 landing ships were among the participating units. I thought that these ships would be lager LST as the offer more accommodation and more comfort both for their crew and their passengers on a deployment to Egypt  The LCT are constructed for action on nearer shores with shorter deployment distances.

My curiosity increased as I read about the deployment of Ç-151 for this exercise as it is not very common that Turkish Navy sends LCT type landing craft to overseas exercises. The LCT are reserved  for national use. This is why they have the Turkish letter “Ç” in their pennant numbers whereas all other Turkish Naval ships have the standard NATO letters.

But my curiosity was resolved in a short time. Again according to ADİK website the company is in discussion with Egyptian Navy to supply LCT and LST for this country and the representatives of ADİK shipyard attended a  meeting of the Egyptian president Mr. Mursi in early October when he was in Ankara.

Thus the deployment of the ADİK build Ç-151 is not just a naval excursion but a sales trip as well.

First New LCT Handed Over To The Turkish Navy

Turkish Navy maintains a large fleet of medium sized landing vessels. There are 25 LCT’s and 16 LCM’s according to Jane’s fighting Ships in the inventory of Turkish Navy. The newest of these vessels is more than 20 years old and their top speed is around 8,5 knots.

In 2007, Undersecretariat for Defence Industries (UDI), submitted a Request for Proposal for 8 LCT’s. These new vessels were to be built in Turkey and had to be fast. From the four companies that submitted to the tender, ADİK shipyard was chosen. On June 2009, a contract was signed between UDI and ADİK for the production of the ships. The exact value of the contract was not made public but it is estimated to be around 100 million EUR.

The first ship Ç-151 was launched on 2 October 2010. The second ship Ç-152 was launched on March 2011. As of March 2012 the first five vessels have been launched. The construction of the remaining three is continuing.

According to ADIK press release each ship has over 7 kilometers of inox piping and over 50 kilometers of cabling. It took on average 400 days to construct one LCT. The LCT’s are 80 meters long. When loaded their speed can be up to 18,5 knots. Unloaded they can reach 20 knots.

Specifications for the LCT’s:
Length o.a: 79,85m
Beam: 11,70 m
Displacement 1155 tons full load
Speed: 20kts
Range: 400 nm / 16 kts
Propulsion: 2 x 2320 kW
Weapons: 2 x 25mm; 1 x 12,7mm
Crew: 22
Cargo: 320 tons / 250 troops

Today the first of the class Ç-151 was handed over to Turkish Navy. The remaining 7 will be delivered in 3 months intervals.

I wish Ç-151 friendly winds and following seas.

A Landing Ship Docked, For The Turkish Navy (UPDATED)

LPD Model of RMK

Some time ago, I have read a very interesting and thought evoking post on the influential blog information dissemination, about the large amphibious ships (LAS) becoming the dreadnoughts of the 21. centuries maritime domain.

Well read the post yourselves and decide if it is true or not. But if you ask me amphibious ships (landing ship docked, landing ship platform, landing ship helicopter ) are the only real multi purpose ships of any navy can posses. The are the naval equivalent of Swiss army knives.

The potential uses for a large amphibious ships can be:
• force projection (the most obvious use)
• evacuation of combatants and non-combatants
• command ship for task force
• logistical supply platform during a humanitarian crisis or disaster
• mother-ship for small boat operations and helicopters
• mine warfare (as all large amphibious ships of Turkish Navy have mine laying capability)

In 2006 , The Commander of  Turkish Naval Forces Admiral Yener Karahanoğlu, laid down the long terms amphibious ship acquisition goals for Turkish Navy:
• One LPD
• Two LST’s
• 8 fast LCT’s
• 27 AAV/AAAV’s

According to this road map in 2007,  Ministry of Defence’s Undersecretariat for Defence Industries (UDI), submitted a RfP for 8 LCT’s. From the four companies that bid, ADİK shipyard was chosen. On June 2009, a contract was signed between UDI and ADİK for the production of 8 ships. The exact value of the contract was not made public but it is estimated to be around 100 million EUR. The first ship Ç-151 was launched on 2 October 2010. Her sea trials are continuing. The second ship Ç-152 was launched on March 2011.

For the LST’s UDI submitted a RFP on May 2008. On 6 January 2010 again ADİK shipyard was declared as the winner of the bid. UDI is in contract negations with this company.And a contract for the construction of two new LST’s was signed between Ministry of Defence and same shipyard just last week. The ships will be delivered in 48 months.

And as you read this blog the third important amphibious ship procurement project will enter into the next phase. Today was last day for companies to submit their proposals for the Landing Platform Dock. Now the evaluation of the proposals by UDI will commence.

LPD model of Fincantieri

During the years the requirements of the Turkish Navy changed so that the size of the LPD has increased. It is estimated that today’s proposals will have a displacement between 25.000 to 28.000 tons range. The ship will have a landing deck big enough to accommodated 4 helicopters of 15 ton class at the same time. According to the RfP the flight deck should be able to support aircraft up to 35 tons weight. . The total personnel on board the ship’s crew plus air detachment and embarked troops is around 1000.

Seven shipyards, ADIK, Çelik Tekne, Dearsan Shipyard, Desan Shipyard, Istanbul Shipyard, RMK Marine and SEDEF received the RfP in February and have been given time till today to prepare their proposals. Some of the teamed with foreign companies. Candidates include DCNS, Damen Schelde Naval Shipbuilding, Navantia, Hanjin Heavy Industries and China State Shipbuilding Corporation are believed to be interested in cooperating with Turkish shipyards for the LPD.

RMK, contrary to the expectations did not cooperated with Fincantieri for this project. In fact a reprasentitve from Fincantieri told me during IDEF that his company would not take part in the bid as their largest amphibious desing was only 20.000 tons. The RMK shipyard has developed its own design with some help from BMT.

Navantia teamed with Sedef Shipyard. Their offer will be something between Juan Carlos 1 and Galicia class ships. Sedef is the first private shipyard ever to produce a ship for the Turkish Navy: A-595 TCG Yarbay Kudret Güngör. I would be a life saver for the local shipyard is they can repeat their one time hit again.

The current solutions of China (Type 071) and South Korea (Dokto class) are less than 20.000 tons. As is they do not have much chance to be successful. I have no information with with Turkish yard they have teamed and how their proposal is prepared. Chinese are showing a growing interest in Turkish defence market. They are competing for the Turkish long ranges SAM system. But in order for the Chinese proposal to be successful they must incorporate Western and local subsystems which are known to Turkish Navy. As Indian naval projects showed, incorporating Western naval systems with Eastern ships can create a lot of problems and headaches and success is not always guarentted.

DCNS’s Mistral has the right size and displacement but political disagreements with France makes it almost impossible for the company to bid.

When commissioned this ship will be the largest ship ever operated by Turkish Navy and it will be our capital ship. The dreadnought era of  Turkish Navy starts today.

UPDATE: Today, Undersecretariat for Defence Industries announced that they have received proposals from the following 3 shipyards:

1. SEDEF Gemi İnşaatı A.Ş.
2. RMK Marine Gemi Yapım Sanayii
3. Deniz Taşımacılığı İşletmesi A.Ş. ve DESAN Deniz İnşaatı San. A.Ş.

The competition will be between the Juan Carlos, RMK/BMT design and Dokto.

IDEF’11 Update Part 2: Companies

This is the second installment of my impression from the IDEF’11. In this post I will try to focus more on companies and products rather than procurement projects. As 621 companies attended the fair I will focus about those that made the most impressions.

Acoustic decoys for submarines and surface ships

Aselsan: This company had the biggest stand of the fair and showed a number of many different equipment ranging from echo sounder to a main battle tank. ASELSAN has proved that it is a powerful company in military electronics. Currently they are capable to produce:

Remote controlled, stabilized gun platforms
Fire control guns for guns
Launcher and command and control system for ASW rockets
Torpedo countermeasure systems and decoys for submarines and surface ships
Integrated communications suites
Laser warning receivers
Electro optical systems
Electronic warfare suites and sensors
Radar systems

The ARES-2N naval radar ES system detects, intercepts, identifies, classifies, tracks, Direction-Finds (DF), localizes, platform correlates, records and provides audio warnings of threat signals within the 2 to 18 GHz frequency band.. The system is integrated into Milgem ans selected for Ay class submarine modernization program.

The ASELFLIR 300D includes a high resolution IR camera, a laser rangefinder/designator, a laser spot tracker, a CDTV, and a spotter TV camera. This EO system is used on Heybeliada, Coast Guard SAR and New Type Patrol Boat classes.

They are developing expendable active jammers which can be fires from the existing chaff/flare launchers.

In a short future the company will be able to provide all the necessary electronics for a warships plus the self defense systems including decoys.

Roketsan: Roketsan is producing the rocket of the ASW rocket system. The rockets individually wrapped in a fiberglass hull have a HE explosive warhead and a time fuse. The maximum range of the rocket is 2000 meters. The aiming and launching is controlled from a purpose built console by ASELSAN.

Havelsan: Havelsan has established themselves as a combat management systems provider. The GENESIS systems architecture they have received from ARMERKOM is the base of all the current CMS developed by Havelsan. The orginal GENESIS CMS developed for G class frigates has derivatived into CMS for MILGEM and New Type Patrol Boats. CMS by Havelsan will be used in New Type 214 submarines, LST’s and LHD’s too.

One of the contracts signed during the fair was between Havelsan and Lockheed Martin for the integration of SPY phased radar systems to the CMS made by Havelsan. The SPY radars are the backbone of the US Navy’s AEGIS air and anti ballistic missile defence system.

Well this question must be asked: On one hand there is a local electronics power house like ASELSAN that is trying to develop naval radar systems on the other hand you sign a deal with a US company about the most important and significant air defence radar systems. How will this deal effect the local development and why it was necessary.

Gate: This company is developing a range of underwater remotely operated vehicles. The ROV Gelibolu can operate at depths up to 1500 meters. It’s primary use will be submarine rescue on board Moship. Other tasks are deep sea survey, seismic research, sample collection and such. The ROV has two manipulator arms and 7 thrusters.

Another underwater vehicle build by GATE is GMK-C. Unlike the Gelibolu GMK-C is autonomous. It can operate up to 100 meter depth and can be equipped with forward looking or side-scan sonars, cameras and other types of sensors or transponders.

Rolls Royce: I must admit that I was quite surprised to see a model of a fully developed supply ship in the both of this company. I knew that they were supplying gas turbines and nuclear reactors for ships and submarines but I had no idea that they were also producing ships. It is too early to say whether this new ship will become a new Silver Shadow for the company but it is a logical step. Rolls Royce already produces a wide range of shipping equipments such as engines, bearings, rudders, water jets, stabilizers, steering gear, deck machinery just to name a few. Well the only and most obvious omission in this portfolio was a ship hull and they have it now.

The ship in contest for a Norwegian bid resembles in general design and specifications the Berlin class EGV ships of German Navy.

BAE Systems: When BAE systems bought UDI in 2005 they have become a partner in UDI’s joint venture with Nurol Makina in Turkey. This JV, FNSS is a major manufacturer of tracked armored fighting vehicles and personnel carriers. Now BAE wants to expand its business in naval area too. I will report in depth my talk with BAE Systems separately.

Lürssen, Abeking Rasmussen, B&V, HDW: These companies, once dominated the IDEF were present, but in a more humble and subtle way. More or less a shadows of their past.

IDEF’11 Update Part 1: Ongoing Naval Projects

F-511 TCG Heybeliada

Today is the last day of IDEF’11, 10th International Defence Industry Fair. I was visiting the fair for the least two days. It was very tiring event. But there are very to share.

I visited the first IDEF twenty years ago. And I can tell you that there has been a considerable change in the industry. Twenty years ago all the international house hold names of defence industry would come and show their latest gadgets or products and we would marvel at them. Now they are still here but much more humble and sincere. Twenty years ago BAE Systems would show its Type 26 Global Combat Ship and would try to sell it as is. Now they are looking for cooperation and work share and they are ready to have Turkish Navy configure the this as it wishes. I was able to talk about Type 26 with BAE systems in detail. I will write about it later.

The last fair two years ago had a very distinctive naval flair. This year that was not there. Well the obvious reason for this is that the projects of then are swimming ships of today. F-511 TCG Heybeliada, the first ship of Milgem class, P-1200 TCG Tuzla the first ship of the New Type Patrol Boat class were available for external sighting. All these ships were on project phase during the last fair.

This fair’s main attractions were tanks, armoured fighting vehicles, UAV’s and helicopters. But never the less there were a lot of important developments regarding the ongoing naval projects.

Milgem: The first ship TCG Heybeliada will be commissioned in Turkish Navy in July. At the same day the second ship, F-512 TCG Büyükada will be launched.

The model of Moship

Moship/Ratship: The design phase for the submarine rescue ship Moship and two rescue and towing ships Ratship is continuing. I learned out to my surprise that Istanbul Shipyard, the builder was responsible for the whole ship inclusive the mission equipment. That means it is the shipyard will also provide the ROV, the McCann bells and other necessary equipment. It must be a steep learning curve for them. The contract for the production of these ships not signed yet. There was a speculation that it might be signed during the fair but this did not happened.

Model of LST

LST: The contract for the construction of a new LST’s was signed between Ministery of Defence and ADIK_Furtrans shipyard on 11 May 2011. The value of the contract was not disclosed but the ship will be delivered in 48 months. The ships will carry 525 persons, 17 MBT and between 24 – 60 vehicles.

The armament consists of 2 single barrelled 40mm Oto Melara guns, 2 Mk15 Phalanx CIWS, 2 machine guns on a stabilised remote controlled chassis.

The ships will have a Smart Mk2 3D air/surface search radar (which not common for an amphibious ship) 2 AselFLIR 300D EO director, torpedo counter measures systems, laser warning receiver and Link16/22 system. All these sensors and weapons will be controlled by a 5 consoles of GENESIS CMS.

New Type Patrol Boats: The first boat of this class P-1200 TCG Tuzla was launched in 2011 and was handed over to Turkish Navy in 4 January 2011. The second boat P-1201 TCG Karaburun was handed over to Turkish Navy on 19 April 2011 for temporary acceptance. The third and fourth boats, P-1202 TCG Köyceğiz and P-1203 TCG Kumkale are launched as early 2001 and they are currently under going sailing acceptance tests and harbour acceptance test respectively. The fifth boat P-1205 TCG Tarsus will be launched in this month.

In the mean time the construction of the two boats ordered by Turkmenistan in October 2010 is continuing. Dearsan shipyard has shipped the boats in kits, along with the equipment necessary for the construction. According to IDEF’11 Show Daily, the construction of two boats is about to be completed and the installation of the propulsion system will commence soon. These have a very similar weapon and sensor configuration to Turkish boats. The main difference is the Turkmenistan boats will have a Thales Variant 2D air/surface search radar and a pair of 25mm Aselsan STOP systems.

Type 214 Submarines: Interestingly there was very little information available about the current status of this programme. But credit contract for this programme was signed at the end of 2010 thus I assume everything is going as scheduled. Currently STM the main subcontractor of this project is sourcing 18000 components and materials to be used. This is a time consuming process. I do not expect any important development in this project before summer.

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