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Turkish aircraft carrier design takes shape

The preliminary design of the future aircraft carrier was visible in photos shared by the Turkish Navy. (Turkish MND)

The Turkish Naval Forces has initiated design activities to advance efforts towards acquiring a domestically built aircraft carrier.

In early January the Turkish government gave the green light during a meeting of the Defence Industry Executive Committee (SSİK), chaired by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, to progress plans for an indigenous aircraft carrier to the design phase.

During a visit to the Design Project Office on 15 February, Turkish government and defence industry officials inspected progress made with the indigenous aircraft project to date. The preliminary design of the future aircraft carrier, which was visible in photos of the visit shared by the Turkish Navy, shows that the carrier will be in short take-off but arrested recovery configuration.

The design shows a single runway and ski jump of approximately 12–14°, with a single island on the starboard side. Other details such as the number of aircraft elevators and their parking spots were not immediately apparent.

The main propulsion system will be a combined gas turbine and gas turbine (COGAG) configuration, probably with General Electric LM2500 gas turbines as these types of turbines are already used by a variety of warships in the Turkish Navy. The estimated speed is 25 kt.

The ship will be 285 m long, with a 68 m beam and a draught of 10 m. The projected displacement is 60,000 tonnes. In this case, the aircraft carrier will have more than twice the displacement of landing helicopter dock (LHD) TCG Anadolu , which is currently the largest warship in Turkish Navy inventory.

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