The new Kargı kamikaze unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) developed by the Turkish defense industry was showcased for the first time as part of the EFES-2022 military drill.
One of the largest planned exercises of the Turkish Armed Forces (TSK), the EFES-2022 field exercise is ongoing in the Seferihisar district of western Izmir with the participation of friendly and allied country elements.
Within the scope of the exercise, local defense industry company Lentatek is exhibiting the UAVs it has developed with domestic and national resources.
The Kargı project was initiated by Lentatek with the support of the Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey (TÜBITAK).
Kargı can suppress and destroy the radars of the enemy’s integrated air defense and surface-to-air weapon systems. With preparations now complete, Lentatek is counting the days before the UAV enters serial production.
The ground systems, navigation and automatic flight control system design and production were all developed domestically, as was the system’s software.
In 2018, Kargı made its maiden flight with Lentatek’s nationally developed aircraft and ground systems as a result of the localization of foreign components, which also applied to the RF seeker and destruction system, the flight engine and launch engine (rocket engine), link system, propeller and fuel tank subsystems, which were all developed within the country as well.
The Kargı project is being carried out under the leadership of Lentatek in cooperation with other leading defense industry companies, namely Aselsan, Turkish Aerospace Industries (TAI) and TÜBITAK’s Defense Industries Research and Development Institute (SAGE).
It bears the PG50 engine developed by TAI’s engine producing subsidiary TUSAŞ Engine Industries (TEI).
The aircraft is launched from canisters, which are also used as storage, thanks to the rocket engine. The Kargı forces the air defense radars to remain passive by navigating the enemy airspace for a long time and will be able to find its target and successfully destroy it with the RF seeker and destruction system.
The kamikaze UAV is expected to replace the Israeli-made Harpy already in the TSK’s inventory.
The IAI Harpy is a loitering munition produced by Israel Aerospace Industries and is designed to attack radar systems and optimized for the suppression of enemy air defenses.
It carries a high explosive warhead.
The Harpy has been sold to several countries, including South Korea, Turkey, India and China.