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Kizilelma Turkey’s First Supersonic Drone Is Combat Ready

According to the defence business, the drone is extremely agile, with a flying time of five hours and an operational height of 35,000 feet.

Video shows Kizilelma UCAV taking flight and landing at an airbase in the northwest Corlu region, 85 km west of the Turkish Financial capital, Istanbul. With a flight time of five hours and an operational altitude of 35,000 feet, the drone is highly maneuverable. It is said to be able to partake in air-to-air combat in addition to normal drone tasks.


According to the country’s leading military company, Turkey’s first jet-powered uncrewed aerial combat vehicle (UCAV), Kizilelma, “Red Apple,” has completed its initial flight. On Wednesday, the test findings for this new combat ariel vehicle were publicised on social media by Baykar (a Turkish defence corporation).

Baykar, who rose to international prominence after supporting Ukraine in its conflict with Russia, tweeted, “The first voyage of Bayraktar #KIZILELMA that will leave an imprint on our great history.”

The video shows the Kizilelma UCAV taking off and landing at an airstrip in the northwest Corlu district, 85 kilometres west of Istanbul, Turkey’s financial centre.

Selcuk Bayraktar, Baykar’s chief technology officer (CTO), said in the video that Kizilelma had successfully completed its first flight.

Flightradar, a Swedish internet-based service that displays real-time aircraft flight monitoring information, announced on Wednesday that an unknown aircraft with the call sign BYK07 was observed above Corlu Airport.


Kizilelma (Red Apple)

The prototype, Kizilelma, was completed in May 2021. The drone is extremely agile, with a flying time of five hours and an operational height of 35,000 feet. It can land and take off from ships with limited runways, according to Baykar.

From the exterior, the new jet-powered drones resemble fifth-generation fighter planes. It is believed to be capable of air-to-air warfare as well as standard drone activities.

“It doesn’t mean it’s absolutely invisible; the aeroplane, Kizilelma (red apple), is visible on the cameras as well,” CTO Bayraktar revealed during EKNOFEST, an Aviation, Space, and Technology Festival held in Samsun, Turkey, in August.

The Turkish drones (Bayraktar series), which are already in operation, will have increased speed and payload capacity as a result of the new UCAV; according to the manufacturer, the drones have played an important part in the battles in northern Iraq and Libya.

Twenty of these drones have already been sent to the UAE, while Malaysia and Indonesia have indicated interest in obtaining armed drones from Turkey.

According to a Reuters story on Thursday, Baykar plans to complete its sole production plant outside of Turkey in two years, which would be in Ukraine.


Supersonic Drone

Turkey was previously sanctioned and withdrawn from the United States’ F-35 programme after entering into a defence partnership with Russia, akin to India, which has not suffered any penalties thus far.

“After being dropped from the F-35 fighter jet programme, Turkey transformed its still-under-construction vertical take-off aircraft carrier into a drone carrier. The carrier will act as a base for Kizilema and other Turkish military drones “According to the Reuters story. Turkey became the first NATO member to acquire S-400 air defence systems from Russia in 2017.

In 2017, Turkey became the first NATO member to purchase S-400 air defence systems from Moscow. Despite concerns from the United States and other NATO members, Turkey accepted the first of four missile batteries in July 2019.

In regard to embargoes imposed by other nations on defence items, the CTO previously indicated that whether systems “will or will not arrive from overseas are not an issue for Türkiye.”

“If there were imported UAVs, we wouldn’t be able to observe them (domestically created drones), so maybe it’s best if they don’t sell us,” he said during the August event.

3 December 2022

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