Turkey Reveals Indigenously Developed Stand-OFF Missiles

Turkish Air Force (TurAF) has revealed two indigenously developed missile systems during the 100th year celebrations at the Cigli airbase in Turkey’s western province of Izmir. Celebrations consisted of public shows by the world’s leading air acrobatics teams, including the USAF Thunderbirds and Turkey’s own Turkish Stars, as well as various other events both on the ground and in the air.

Developed by TUBITAK-SAGE as a result of an ambitious project started in 2006, Turkey’s first indigenous stand-off missile is designed for destroying both fixed and large moving targets at a range of over 180 kilometers. Currently referred to by the TurAF as SOM, it can be used as a precision strike weapon against both land or sea targets. TUBITAK-SAGE officials who spoke at the Cigli airshow said that the initial demonstartion flights of the prototypes were completed successfully at undisclosed locations and the delivery of a first batch of missiles to TurAF would take place by the end of 2011 following more vigorous live firing tests scheduled for the rest of the year.

SOM missile uses GPS (Global Positioning System) as its primary mode of guidance complemented by an advanced intertial navigation system and a radar-based terrain contour matching system, dubbed TERCOM, allowing the missile to ‘hug’ the terrain during its flight as to avoid detection by radar. SOM also features improved geometry and aerodynamics over similar missile systems, as well as lightweight composite components that minimize the radar cross-section of the missile and turning it stealth. A terminal stage infrared imager recognizes the individual target by matching its signature with a pre-loaded database of similar targets and allows for precision homing and strike.

SOM can currently be installed and used aboard TurAF F-4 Phantom and F-16 aircraft.

“Certification work is in progress to enable the missile for use aboard the F-35,” a TUBITAK-SAGE official told on condition of anonymity. Turkey plans to procure an initial batch of 120 F-35 planes to replace its aging fleet of F-4 Phantoms and the older F-16 Block 30s.

Source: http://www.trdefence.com/?p=4812


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