ARES shipyard and METEKSAN Defense, which launched Turkey’s first Indigenous Armed Unmanned Surface Vehicle (AUSV) program in October 2020, announced that the prototype vessel – ULAQ AUSV – has been launched and sea trials have started.
In a joint press release, Utku Alanç, general manager of ARES shipyard, and Selçuk K. Alparslan, general manager of METEKSAN Defense, said: “In the field of unmanned surface vehicles (USV), we would like to announce with pride that we have launched the first ULAQ series unmanned armed surface vehicle and entered the period of intensive sea trials. Now our next short term goal is to successfully complete sea trials and perform guided missile firing tests. announcement from ULAQ Unmanned Systems, we have met significant interest from our country and our allies. This interest and support have prompted us to design and build unique, state-of-the-art solutions. We would like to express our sincere gratitude to the Turkish Ministry of National Defense, the Presidency of Turkish Defense Industries and Naval Forces and all of our citizens who have given their full support since the very first launch of the ULAQ program. “
ULAQ was built from advanced composites, has a range of 400 kilometers, a speed of 65 kilometers per hour, day / night vision capabilities and an encrypted communications infrastructure. It can be operated from mobile vehicles and headquarters or maritime platforms such as aircraft carriers or frigates, and it will be used for missions such as intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance, warfare. surface, asymmetric warfare, escort missions, protection of strategic infrastructure.
AUSV’s prototype missile systems include two L-UMTAS anti-tank missiles and four 70mm Cirit anti-tank / anti-personnel missiles, supplied by Turkish missile system supplier Roketsan. Cooking tests are planned towards the end of the first quarter of 2021.
In addition to missile systems, the AUSV will be equipped with a variety of communications and intelligence systems – such as jamming and electronic warfare systems – to meet a variety of operational needs. The AUSV will be able to conduct joint operations with complementary forces such as UAVs, AUAVs and TUAVs. In addition, the AUSV is not only a remote-controlled vehicle, but also (and above all) an autonomous vehicle that houses artificial intelligence.
It is declared by the ARES shipyard and METEKSAN Defense that after the first prototype ship, other USVs for operations such as surveillance and intelligence, mine action, anti-submarine warfare, anti-submarine warfare fires and search and rescue missions will be ready to be manufactured.
This article is sponsored by ARES shipyard.
The opinions expressed here are those of the author and not necessarily those of The Maritime Executive.