The Turkish Air Force recently received its first indigenously upgraded F-16 fighter jet.
The aircraft has been upgraded under project Ozgur, undertaken by Turkish Aerospace Industries.
Turkey will upgrade 30-35 F-16 Block 30s under the project’s first phase, followed by Block 40 and 50 in subsequent phases, according to Savunma Sanayist.
The air force operates 43 F-16 Block 30 C and D models, 117 Block 40, and 110 Block 50 aircraft.
“We delivered our first F-16s. From now on, our F-16s will continue to serve our air force with much more advanced capabilities. May it be a gift to the Turkish century,” the outlet quoted President of Defense Industries head İsmail Demir as saying.
The upgrades include electro-optical systems and avionics, a national mission computer, and operational flight software.
Additional upgrades include “national friend-foe identification systems, multi-mode receivers, inertial navigation systems, interface blinding units, helmet integrated aiming systems, center cockpit indicator and color multifunction displays,” according to Daily Sabah.
A locally developed active electronically scanned array radar will also be retrofitted with the aircraft, along with several indigenously-developed missiles such as the Gokdogan and Bozdogan air-to-air missiles, Gezgin and Cakir cruise missiles, and Atmaca anti-ship missiles.
The upgrades are expected to increase the aircraft’s flight hours from 8,000 to 12,000 hours.