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Turkish Firms Join Forces in Developing Armed USVs

Several defense companies in Turkey have teamed up to develop new armed unmanned surface vehicles (USVs) to bolster the country’s maritime defenses.

During a steel cutting ceremony held earlier this month, Aselsan and Sefine Shipyard unveiled the initial production of the NB57 anti-submarine warfare USV and RD09 anti-surface warfare. Ship engineering company SEFT Ship Design will reportedly contribute to the project by managing the overall design of the vessels.

Technology firm Armelsan Defence has also been contracted to supply sonar for the NB57 USV, while Turk Loydu (Turkish Lloyd) has been tasked with developing autonomous military ship protocols.

The unmanned vessels will include gun and indigenous missile systems courtesy of Aselsan and Turkish missile producer Roketsan. NB07 will be fitted with 2×2 lightweight torpedoes, while the RD09 will have two tactical missile launchers.

Turkey’s military will utilize both the NB57 USV and RD09 anti-surface warfare for missions such as autonomous reconnaissance and intelligence, surface warfare, anti-submarine warfare, and protection of bases and other critical facilities.

About NB57 and RD09 USV

The new surface vehicles will be able to travel up to 40 knots (74 kilometers per hour) and have an operational range of 600 nautical miles. Although developers have not disclosed the size of the vessels, it has been revealed that the NB57 and RD09 USVs will be transported by cargo aircraft or naval ship.

The new vessels will be equipped with robust automation that provides adaptive navigation through various sensors. They will also be able to sail autonomously in accordance with maritime protocols.

The payload capacity of the RD09 anti-surface warfare can also be increased to accommodate more weapons and equipment if needed. It will also be capable of performing electronic warfare and mine warfare missions.

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