The Turkish fifth-generation fighter plane will be dubbed “KAAN,” as President Recep Tayyip Erdogan confirmed on Monday. The TF-X, also known as the National Combat Aircraft (MMU), made its initial appearance on the runway and performed its first taxi test in the middle of March, prompting comments from Erdogan.
“Türkiye is now in all fields, on land, in the sea and underwater, in the air and in space,” Erdoğan said at the “Century of the Future” event held in the capital Ankara.
Erdoğan watched as KAAN and Hürjet, the first domestically-made jet light attack and training aircraft, taxied down the runway of the Turkish Aerospace Industries (TAI) headquarters in Kahramankazan district.
As the Air Force Command’s F-16s are retired in the 2030s, TAI has been working on a fifth-generation aircraft to take their place. The undertaking began in 2016.
According to Erdogan, Turkey is now one of the few countries with the resources to manufacture a fighter jet of the fifth generation.
The 70-foot-long jet is capable of a top speed of Mach 1.8 thanks to its twin engines, which can produce a thrust of 29,000 pounds (13,000 kilograms) each.
The KAAN incorporates all the latest advancements in technology and features found in modern fifth-generation fighter jets. It’ll let you launch coordinated attacks against both air and ground targets. A national-level infrastructure supports secure data interchange and the employment of smart weapons.
Its high-performance radar, electronic warfare, electro-optics, communication, navigation, and identification capabilities will achieve greater combat power with precision and accurate firing from internal weapon slots at high/supersonic velocity.
It also features automatic target recognition and detection, multiple data fusion, and artificial intelligence capabilities.
The project helped Türkiye advance in technological areas such as low visibility, internal weapon slots, high maneuverability, increased situational awareness and sensor fusion, all of which are necessary features for a next-generation aircraft.