TCG UFUK (A-591), also known as TCG Horizon, is a test and training corvette vessel built at the Istanbul Maritime Shipyard in Tuzla, Istanbul, for the Turkish Naval Forces.
The vessel can also be used for signal and electronic intelligence (SIGINT/ELINT) missions.
The Turkish Naval Forces Command employs the TCG UFUK jointly with the National Intelligence Organisation (MIT) to monitor, gather and analyse electronic data. The vessel is also used for countermeasures and to disrupt the electronic signals of enemy forces.
The corvette was launched in February 2019 and began sea trials in mid-2020. It was officially put into service with the Turkish Naval Forces in January 2022.
The TCG UFUK took part in the Turkish Navy’s BlueHomeland-2022 exercise, conducted in the Black Sea, the Aegean Sea and the Eastern Mediterranean, in April 2022. A total of 122 ships, 41 aircraft and 12,000 navy personnel participated in the exercise.
TCG UFUK vessel design and features
The TCG UFUK was built using the hull design of the indigenous Ada-class corvette under the MILGEM project, which is the national warship programme of Turkey.
TCG UFUK has a length of 99.5m, width of 14.4m, draft of 3.6m and displacement of 2,400t. It features a landing deck for a 10t helicopter.
The ship can accommodate 110 crew members and has an endurance of 45 days in harsh weather and sea conditions, including in international waters. It can operate as a single platform or with other units.
TCG UFUK is installed with equipment required to provide SIGINT/ELINT capabilities. The on-board equipment provides early warning, communication and reconnaissance capabilities.
Furthermore, the ship features equipment to gather strategic information, such as electromagnetic, hydro-acoustic and electro-optical devices.
The ship is armed with machine guns for self-defence. However, to avoid being seen as a threat while operating in international waters, it is not equipped with any large-scale armaments.
Powered by diesel engines, the ship has a top speed of 18k. It is equipped with four generators, each capable of supplying 750kVA of energy. The ship has a total power output of 8,600kW.
ADVENT combat management system
The TCG UFUK is equipped with HAVELSAN’s ADVENT, a network-enabled data integrated combat management system (CMS) with scalable open architecture that can be customised for allies.
ADVENT is a new-generation command and control system that supports tactical data links, such as Link 11, Link 16 and Link 22, as well as SIMPLE, Joint Range Extension Applications Protocol (JREAP) and Variable Message Format (VMF). It provides situational awareness and enables users to make quick and accurate decisions.
The CMS is also used in other Turkish Navy vessels, such as TCG KINALIADA and TCG BEYKOZ. It supports anti-submarine, anti-air and anti-surface warfare.
Turkey’s Presidency of Defense Industries (SSB) signed a contract with STM for the test and training ship project in December 2016. STM was appointed as the main contractor for the project.
Istanbul Shipyard was selected to build the national intelligence ship.
The project involved 194 local companies, including ASELSAN, an arms manufacturing company, HAVELSAN, a software and systems company, ANEL and YALTES.
ASELSAN was contracted to supply the corvette’s main systems, including the design and integration of radars, as well as communication and navigation systems.
HAVELSAN provided the Advent combat management system as well as other systems for the ship, while YALTES supplied the PIKET3000 integrated platform management system (IPMS) solution.
STM engaged Turkish company ISBIR to provide power generators for the ship.