TheTurkish defense industry has added another feather to its cap by combining the capabilities of unmanned land vehicles with loitering ammunition.
Havelsan, a defense firm that manufactures the unmanned autonomous land vehicle Barkan for use by security forces, is working continuously to add new capabilities to the vehicle.
Previously, another Turkish defense giant Roketsan’s guided mini missile Mete was launched from the Barkan 1.
This was the first time a kamikaze ammunition was fired from Barkan’s 2 version.
The Barkan 2 gained the distinction of being the first in its class to integrate loitering ammunition, also described as a “kamikaze unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV).”
While performing missions and activities with Barkan 2 in a 15-kilometer (9.3-mile) radius, Gurbag Defense’s reconnaissance surveillance and kamikaze ammunition was successfully fired from a hydrogen-powered two-launcher system connected to a single tower.
The firing of this type of ammunition and multiple launchers from a single tower over an unmanned land vehicle is considered a first in the international arena.
With an electric propulsion system, the fired loitering kamikaze has a range of 15 kilometers (9.3 miles), a flight altitude of 3,000 meters (1.8 miles), and a hover time of 40 minutes.
Thanks to its modular structure, different payloads can be quickly integrated into Barkan, which has also entered the Turkish Armed Forces inventory in recent months.
Veysel Ataoğlu, director of product development and production at Havelsan, said the loitering ammunition can also be provided with swarm capabilities, and that the firm aims to increase deterrence by incorporating this capability into the mixed swarm concept.
“We have reflected the concept of using all systems as a swarm both on land, in the air, and at sea,” he said. “The second purpose here is to ensure that 8-10 loitering ammunition can be fired at the same time, become a swarm in the air, and perform tasks at the same time with our other unmanned vehicles.”