Aerial Warfare

Bayraktar TB3 UCAV Sets New Altitude Record with Domestically Produced Engine

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Bayraktar TB3 UCAV Sets New Altitude Record with Domestically Produced Engine

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Bayraktar TB3 UCAV Sets New Altitude Record with Domestically Produced Engine
Bayraktar TB3 UCAV Sets New Altitude Record with Domestically Produced Engine

Baykar continues to test the Bayraktar TB3 unmanned combat aerial vehicle (UCAB), which it developed indigenously and originally, successfully. The company’s new UCAV , which completed its maiden flight on 27 October 2023 on the occasion of the Republic’s centennial, has been passing medium- and high-altitude performance tests with flying colors. It recently completed another test, breaking a new record in the process. During a recent flight at the AKINCI Flight Training and Test Center in Çorlu, Tekirda?, the Bayraktar TB3 UCAV, climbed to 33,000 feet as it passed the High-Altitude System Performance Test. Having taken off with PD-170, an indigenous engine developed by TEI, the UCAV climbed to the highest altitude that any aircraft has reached to date with an indigenous engine during the test.

The Bayraktar TB3 reached a major milestone in the history of Turkish aviation with its new altitude record. The Bayraktar AKINCI UCAV, an original product that Baykar developed indigenously, holds the altitude record in Turkish aviation with 45,118 feet. The Bayraktar TB3 UCAV remained airborne for 327 hours and 35 minutes during its test flights to date. The indigenous aircraft flew for 32 hours during a long flight test on 20 December 2023, covering a distance of 5700 kilometers in the sky. The Bayraktar TB3 UCAV flew for the first time with Aselsan’s indigenous ASELFLIR-500 camera pod on 26 March 2024. During that test, Baykar successfully completed the integration of the ASELFLIR-500 Electro-Optical Reconnaissance, Surveillance and Targeting System, which outperforms all similar products worldwide.

Developed by Baykar indigenously and originally, the Bayraktar TB3 UCAV successfully completed its High-Altitude System Performance Test, breaking the altitude record of 33,000 with its indigenous engine.
Developed by Baykar indigenously and originally, the Bayraktar TB3 UCAV successfully completed its High-Altitude System Performance Test, breaking the altitude record of 33,000 with its indigenous engine. (Photo by Baykar Tech)

The Bayraktar TB3 UCAV will be the world’s first armed drone capable of taking off and landing on short-runway vessels like TCG Anadolu thanks to its foldable wings. Selçuk Bayraktar, Baykar’s Chairman and CTO, had previously announced that the company plans to start testing the Bayraktar TB3 aboard TCG Anadolu within the year 2024. The Bayraktar TB3’s capabilities will represent a major leap forward for unmanned aerial vehicles in its class. The indigenous drone will have BLOS communication capabilities which will make it possible for it to be operated from vast distances. This will enable the Bayraktar TB3 to conduct reconnaissance-surveillance, intelligence and offensive missions (with its smart munitions) against overseas targets, emerging as a force multiplier for Türkiye’s deterrent power.

Baykar, which has been financing all its projects with its own resources since its inception, has obtained 83% of its total revenue from exports since the beginning of the UAV R&D process in 2003. According to the data of the Turkish Exporters Assembly (T?M) in 2021 and 2022, it became the export leader of the defense and aviation sector. Baykar, announced as the export champion of the sector by the Presidency of Defense Industries in 2023, realized exports worth 1.8 billion dollars last year. Baykar, which has obtained more than 90% of its income from exports in recent years, single-handedly accounted for one-third of the exports in the defense and aviation sector in 2023. Baykar, the world’s largest UAV exporter, has 97.5% of its currently signed contracts sourced from exports. Export agreements have been signed with a total of 33 countries for Bayraktar TB2 UAV and with 9 countries so far for Bayraktar AKINCI UCAV.

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