Russian Submarine Stary Oskol Passed Through Bosphorus

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Russian submarine Stary Oskol passing through Istanbul.

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Russian submarine was escorted by Turkish Coast Guard vessel TCSG-88 and trailed by Turkish ASW boat P-1207 TCG Tekirdağ during the submarines passage through Istanbul. Frigate TCG Yıldırım was waiting for the submarine at the northern entrance of the Strait.

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Stary Oskol is the third improved Kilo class submarine assigned to the Black Sea Fleet.

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On 29 June 2016, the improved Kilo submarine of the Black Sea Fleet, Stary Oskol made her inaugural passage through Istanbul Strait.
She is the third of a four Varshavyanka submarines being build for the Russian Black Sea Fleet. The first pair of these submarines, Novorossiysk and Rostov-na-Donu are already been commissioned.

With the arrival of this boat, the number of submarines in Russian Black Sea Fleet has increased to four: the Kilo class Alrosa and the impreoved Kilo (Varshavyanka) class Novorossiysk, Rostav-na-Donu and Stary Oskol.

During her passage through Istanbul Strait, the submarine was escorted by Turkish Coast Guard vessel TCSG-88 and trailed by anti submarine warfare patrol boat TCG Tekirdağ. Turkish frigate TCG Yıldırım was waiting for her at the northern enterance of the Istanbul Strait.

Mid-Life Modernisation For Preveze Class Submarines

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One of the four Preveze class submarines which will receive a mid-life-modernisation.

The Undersecretariat for Defence Industries (UDI) has issued a request for proposal for the mid-life modernisation work on Preveze class submarines.

UDI has issued the RfP in Turkish as it is local development project.

UDI previously managed the upgrade of two Type 209/1200 class submarines TCG Doğanay and TCG Dolunay. The contract was awarded to STM and the project included renewal of electronic support, attack and search periscopes and inertial navigation systems.

although the scope of mid-life modernisation work on Preveze class submarines has not been published yet, it is safe to assume it will involve the upgrade of the electronic systems maybe even the combat management system. If so then the CMS developed for Preveze class submarines may work as a prototype for the future CMS of the Reis (Type 212) class submarines.

Turkish Navy operates 12 Type 209 submarines. The oldest 5 of them are Ay class submarines. The reminder are Type 209/1400 class submarines. The first batch of four is known as Preveze class and the last four as Gür class. The main difference between these are the later have a new fire control system integrated with the sonar, new data links and improved target acquisition and tracking capabilities.

Turkish Company Will Upgrade Pakistan’s Submarines

Pakistan’s Ministry of Defence Production selected Turkish company Savunma Teknolojileri Mühendislik (STM) to upgrade Pakistani Khalid class submarines.

The contract was signed on 22 June and is about the upgrade of one submarine with an option for two. Pakistan operates 3 Khalid submarines.

The work on the first submarine will be finished in 45 months. Pakistani media said the modernisation programme would focus on mission systems and sensors within the submarine, including a new combat management system. According to media reports STM has beaten the French company DCNS that designed and constructed the Khalid class submarines.

This contract is a major milestone for STM. STM was established in 1991 to provide system engineering, technical support, project management, technology transfer and logistics support services for Turkish Armed Forces (TAF) and Undersecretariat for Defence Industries (SSM). The contract is important since Turkish does not operate any French designed submarines. All Turkish Navy submarines are Type 209 variants. Thus STM will have to develop its solution on a new and previously unknown platform. This might be a challenge.

STM is also the main contractor of the logistic support ship currently being constructed in Karachi Shipyard and Engineering Works Ltd in Pakistan.

This is however is not the first time Turkey is helping Pakistan Navy to maintain its submarines. Tench class submarine PNS Ghazi was sent to Turkey for a $1.5 million refit in 1967-68.

 

Turkish Navy Released A Video About Beyaz Fırtına Naval Exercise

Turkish Navy released a official video from the live firings conducted during the Beyaz Fırtına 2016 (White Storm) Naval Exercise.

I must admit that, I have found the scene showing, the torpedo leaving the submarine, very impressive.

The Sinking Of Ex TCG Zafer

Turkish Navy concluded Beyaz Fırtına (White Storm) 2016 Naval exercise on 28 May 2016. During this exercise the hull of the decommissioned Knox class frigate ex USS Thomas C. Hart and ex TCG Zafer was used as a target. The torpedo is believed to be DM2A4

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Ex TCG Zafer being towed in Çanakkale Strait on 30 April 2016. Photo: Murad Sezer. I thought that the she was being towed to the ship breakers in Aliağa. But her fate was different.

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These are official Turkish Navy photos taken from a helicopter during the sinking of ex- TCG Zafer. The shape of the hull is not much different compared to the photo taken in Çanakkale. This indicates that she was not hit by any other weapons or missiles. This photo shows the initial explosion of a torpedo warhead under the keel of the ship. The force of the explosion lifts the ship up.

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The shock wave of the detonation travels through the hull of the ship creating further damage. The ship is broken in two and is lost.

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The fracture line going from port to the starboard side of the ship can be seen just below the funnel.

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Water ingress through the fracture, separates the two halves and they begin to sink.

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It’s time to say goodby to a ship that faithfully served both U.S and Turkish Navies.

Lest We Forget: TCG Dumlupınar

On 4 April 1953, in the wee hours of the morning two Turkish submarines  TCG Dumlupınar and her sister boat TCG 1. İnönü,entered from the Aegean into the Dardanelles Strait, as the returning from the NATO naval exercise Blue Sea.

The Commodore of First Submarine Squadron was in command of the two submarines and he was on board of TCG Dumlupınar. When the submarine reached the Cape Nara, the narrowest point of the Strait the Swedish flagged cargo ship M/V Naboland collided with the submarine. The accident happened at 02:15 in the morning.

M/V Naboland rammed TCG Dumlupınar from starboard forecastle just aft of the forward diving planes. The submarine rolled to port with force of the impact and sunk immediately. 5 submariners who were in the sail at the time of the collision survived. Rest of the crew, 81 men, were trapped inside her hull. She sunk at the narrowest point of Dardanelles at 85 meters.

22 sailors trapped in the aft torpedo compartment were able to release the submarine’s sunk buoy. The rescuers above the water tried to give hope and moral but time was an enemy. Submarine rescue and salvage ships were rushed from the main naval base in Gölcük after the incident. But all efforts to reach the submarine and rescue the survivors failed cause of very strong water currents and insufficient equipment.

The last words from the submarine, before the currents tore the cable of buoy were: For our country.

Since that fateful day, on every 4th of April we remember those that have a watery grave were no rose will grow.

A Submarine Sighted

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On 10th March 2016, a Turkish Navy, Ay class submarine was sighted passing through Bosphorus.
Since Turkish Navy stopped painting the pennant number of the submarines on their hulls, it is impossible to identify each individual submarine anymore. While this new painting scheme helps the submarines to blend and prevents IR/FLIR/LLTV using trackers or electro-optic directors any high contrast target, it makes ship spotting difficult.

Turkish Navy Held Exercise For Aviation Units

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A S-70B Seahawk helicopter conducts vertical replenishment to a Ay class submarine. Photo: Turkish Navy

Turkish Navy conducted a small scale naval exercise between 15th and 19th February 2016. The Exercise “Şehit Rad.Asb.Kd.Çvş. Aydın CANBOLAT Tatcial Training” was named after the radar operator Petty Officer 2nd Class Aydın Canpolat who died when his Coast Guard AB-412 helicopter crashed to the sea in 2005.

As the name of the exercise suggests the aim of it was to train Turkish naval aviation units.  9 S-70B Seahawk ASW helicopters, 3 CN-235-100M ASW planes, 2 frigates, 2 fast attack craft and one submarine  took part in the training.

Landing and taking of from a frigate sized flight deck, vertical replenishment, search and rescue operations, anti submarine warfare, coordinated action with surface and submarine units, torpedo firings were some of the actions performed during the exercise.

Dynamic Manta 2016 Has Started

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Turkey is participating to the DYMA 2016 with one CN-235 ASW plane, the submarine TCG Dolunay and a

One of the largest anti submarine warfare exercises organised by NATO has started to-day off the coast of Sicily.Exercise Dynamic Manta 2016 will be held in Central Mediterranean where the ports and airbases on the island will host ships, submarines and air planes. The exercise will end of 4th March 2016.

Submarines from France, Greece, Italy, Spain, Turkey, the United Kingdom, and the United States, under the control of NATO Submarine Command (COMSUBNATO), will join 4 surface ships from France, Italy and Spain. Host nation Italy is providing support from the Augusta Naval Base, Catania Harbour and the Sigonella Air Base in Catania.

To support the simulated multi-threat environment, 9 Maritime Patrol Aircraft and Helicopters from France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Turkey, United Kingdom and the United States will operate from Sigonella Air Base under the control of personnel from NATO Maritime Air Command (COMMARAIRNATO).

The aim of this exercise is to provide all participants with complex and challenging warfare training to enhance their interoperability and proficiency in anti-submarine and anti-surface warfare skills, with due regard to safety.
NATO has not published a list of participants yet but I was able to find the names of the following units:

Number Name Type Country
D-642 FS Montcalm Frigate France
A-608 FS Var Tanker France
S-352 TCG Dolunay Submarine Turkey
S-121 HS Pipinos Submarine Greece
S-73 SPS Mistral Submarine Spain
F-81 SPS Santa Maria Frigate Spain

 

German Company Under Investigation For Bribery In Turkish Submarine Deal

State Prosecutors of the city state Bremen have opened a second front in their case against Atlas Elektronik.

Authorities are investigating Atlas Elektronik a joint venture between ThyssenKrupp and Airbus since 2013, for possible kickbacks in the submarine business with Greece. Some irregularities came on with Turkish Reis class (Type 214) project according to the spokesperson of Bremen City Prosecutor’s Office.

It is suspected that the company may have bribed Turkish officials. On 16 February 2016, related business documents and data material was confiscated from the Headquarters of Atlas Electronic in Bremen.
on the premises safe.

The investigations in Greece revealed that bribes totaling €62 million paid for armament contracts between 2000 and 2007.

In Turkish Type 214 project Atlas Elektronik is responsible for delivering very critical and highly specialized combat management system ISUS-90/72 and active and passive sonars.

It is too early to say whether this new investigation will have any negative effects on delivery of Atlas Electronic supplied items.

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