Vestel, which has been developing unmanned aerial vehicle projects related to the defense industry since 2005, introduced the most effective model developed to date. IDEF International Defense Industry Fair, one of the most important organizations of the Turkish Defense Industry, opened its doors 09 May 2017. While special projects were taking place at the fair, which was held for the 13th time this year, Vestel introduced its new unmanned vehicle, which was highly anticipated this year. Turkish engineers at Vestel's local capabilities and totally 2005 unmanned aerial vehicle in the segment that produces a variety of projects since last year to develop the latter Southwind we have witnessed with the project. Karayel-SU , which was introduced at this year's fair, will be able to serve in many areas as the most advanced model offered by the brand so far.
The armed version of Karayel, which was developed entirely with local facilities, was produced on demand and the ammunition integration was completed in as little as 3 months , and successfully completed its shooting flight in June of last year. Following this success, the wingspan was increased to enable Karayel to carry more useful loads, and it reached the ability to serve with a total of 120 kilograms of ammunition, and the stations on the wing were developed in a modular structure , making it possible to carry different loads besides the ammunition.
Vestel Group of Companies Turan Erdogan, made an assessment on Karayel-SU ; "We have been carrying out important works on unmanned aerial vehicle project with Vestel Defense since its establishment. Our ongoing cooperation and export activities in international markets continue at an accelerated pace. Our new generation unmanned aerial vehicle has now become the most advanced model in its segment and attracts great interest from many countries. In the future, Southwind-SU co-production, marketing and export success, we believe that it will successfully represent Turkey in the international arena." He underlined that they will be much more active in this field in the coming period.
KARAYEL Tactical UAV System is the first and only Tactical Unmanned Aerial Vehicle designed and produced according to NATO’s STANAG-4671 for reconnaissance and surveillance purposes. KARAYEL system has novel triple redundant distrubted avionics architecture which ensures protection against all kinds of uncontrolled crash. With this feature, VESTEL Defence has carried systematic fault safety used only in manned aviation in the world until now to an unmanned aerial vehicle for the first time with KARAYEL. The aerial vehicle has the ability to protect against lightning thanks to the aluminum network grid on its composite structure. ‘De-Icing System’, which automatically detects icing conditions and activates, is used. With this feature, KARAYEL resists adverse weather conditions and shows superior. It has the ability to detect and identify targets with the payloads it carries for reconnaissance and su, and to direct laser controlled ammunitions thanks to the marking system.
VESTEL Defence has respectively developed EFE, BORA and KARAYEL Indigenous UAVs in Mini, Midi and Tactical UAV categories thanks to the broad knowledge and experience it has obtained during the works conducted on Unmanned Aerial Vehicles starting from 2005. VESTEL Defence has the ability to design, produce and test any aerial vehicle for required operations. Based on the vision for being one of the leading companies around the region in Unmanned Aerial Vehicles area; VESTEL Defence’s emgineering team perform avionic design, software development activities including structural and aerodynamic design, auto-pilot system, central control computer and ground control station. “Airworthiness Standard: STANAG-4671” published by NATO for UAVs are considered in UAV systems designed and produced under VESTEL Defence. Thanks to this approach, UAVs developed in VESTEL Defence are distinguished as the most compliant systems in terms of these criteria when the subject is UAVs flying within civilian airspace.
Turkish defense industry's national unmanned aerial vehicles (IHA) Karayel has reached 10 thousand flight hours. Gaining knowledge and experience with UAV's work since 2005 Vestel Savunma Sanayi AS developed Efe, Bora and Karayel respectively in mini, midi and tactical UAV categories.
Since the need for UAVs will increase in the future, Vestel Defense continued to expand the usage areas of the Karayel UAV System last year with the integration of new technological systems and payloads. In this context, SAR (Search and Rescue) and AIS (Automatic Identification System) integrations have been completed for use in naval patrol missions to the Karayel UAV System. The satellite communication system integration to be used in cross-line missions has reached the stage of completion.
Designed entirely by Turkish engineers, Karayel's many subcomponents and software have been developed locally, up to the flight mission computer. Therefore, changes in aircraft or integration of new payloads can be done quickly. Domestic UAV engines can also be used quickly in Karayel. Karayel can serve with 4 mini smart ammunition MAM-L produced by ROKETSAN as an armed. Karayel successfully flew in difficult conditions, from minus 40 degrees to 55-60 degrees.
The Zorlu Group had invested over $ 100 million for Karayel's development and product family by 2019.
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