The Turkish Navy recently received the first Leonardo ATR-72 (P-72) anti-submarine warfare (ASW) patrol aircraft from Turkish Aerospace Industries (TAI).
“Within the scope of the MELTEM-3 project, the first P-72 Naval Patrol Plane with TCB-751 tail number was received by the Naval Forces Command at a ceremony held at TUSAŞ / Ankara facilities and transferred to the Naval Air Command Kartepe / Kocaeli,” Ministry of Defense of Turkey said in a statement today.
In mid-2021, Alenia Aermacchi signed an agreement with TAI for modification of six ATR 72 aircraft into ATR 72-600 ASW TMPA (Turkish Maritime Patrol Aircraft) configuration. The work to convert the “green” ATR 72-600 in ATR 72-600TMPA will be performed by TAI. The aircraft are being under the Meltem III programme.
It is a special version of the ATR 72 turboprop regional aircraft made by the French-Italian ATR joint venture (Alenia Aermacchi/EADS).
The first aircraft was expected to be delivered in February 2017.
The ATR 72TMPA is the Turkish Navy version of the ATR 72ASW (Anti-Submarine Warfare) aircraft with competitive acquisition and operational costs.
The ATR 72-600TMPA plane is integrated with Thales AMASCOS mission system and will include new functionalities such as AIS, Link 16 and the last generation weapon systems, like the Mk 54 Light Weight Torpedo.
The AMASCOS (Airborne Maritime Situation & Control System) mission system relies on multiple sensors to detect, identify and track threats, maintain real-time tactical situation awareness, manage NATO and national tactical data links and deploy onboard weapon systems.
While Alenia Aermacchi is responsible for the design and development of the transformation of the basic platform and for the mission system’s installation and integration with the on-board systems of the basic aircraft, Thales will act as lead systems integrator for the ATR 72-600’s new avionics suite which offers improved performance in terms of reduced weight and electrical power consumption as well as higher reliability and better long-term serviceability.
The typical missions of this version include vessel search and identification, search and rescue (SAR), drug, smuggling and piracy control, environmental control (pollution by oil and chemical substances), maritime patrol roles, economic exclusive zone patrol (fishing, off-shore platforms), and Anti-Submarine Warfare.