ANKARA, TURKEY – Turkey has begun to write a new chapter in its modern military history. Turkey’s original military aircraft, the National Fighter Aircraft [MMU in Turkish] TAI TF-X, has started taxiing tests. The TF-X, which took to the track with its own engines, successfully completed the test.

The Turkish National Fighter Aircraft project, initiated by the Defense Industries Presidency [SSB] and executed by the main contractor TAI, is progressing successfully. The domestic fighter jet, which recently fired its engines for the first time, has started taxiing tests, the next stage of ground tests.

According to reports in the Turkish media, during the test held on Thursday, March 16, the TAI TF-X started its own engines and took to the track. The test consisted of starting the engines and moving by itself, advancing along the track up to a certain distance. Turkey declared that the test had been a success, as it was.

The next test will be officially presented tomorrow, March 18. It is known as roll-out, which is the official departure of the plane from the hangar. Track driving showed that the Turkish TAI TF-X is fully ready to perform the roll-out test.

The MMU receives its own camouflage.

Special images of the Turkish national fighter on the runway have reached the editorial staff of BulgarianMilitary.com, thanks to Turkish sources. The images show that the TAI TF-X has received its gray paint, while the air intakes and parts of the fairing are painted in a lighter color.

The Turkish fighter TAI TF-X starts shooting tests.

The first flight will be in 2023

The TAI TF-X project, which Turkey intends to develop as its own 5th generation fighter jet with national resources, went live on August 5, 2016. Ankara had initially planned for the aircraft to make its maiden flight in 2026. However, Turkey is moving quickly and now claims that the first flight will end in 2023.

It is known that 3 MMU Block 0 prototypes and 1 MMU Block I will be produced by TAI. Production of 3 Block 0 MMU prototypes is scheduled to be completed by the end of 2026. 

Starting in 2029, it is intended to start production activity of the MMU Block I configuration and deliver 10 A/C Block I MMUs to the Turkish Air Force.

The domestic fighter-bomber, which will be qualified as a 4.5 generation in the first phase, aims to reach the 5th generation status in the last phase. Currently, the US-made F-22 and F-35 fighters are known as 5th-generation fighters. The Russian-made Su-57 and Chinese-made J-20 platforms are described as 4.5-generation fighter jets aiming to achieve 5th-generation status.

Via: Bulgarian Military