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HİSAR-A AND HİSAR-O AIR DEFENCE MISSILE SYSTEMS AND TEST ACTIVITIES

Within the scope of the HİSAR-A Air Defence Missile System Project, which was initiated to meet the low altitude air defence missile system needs of the Turkish Armed Forces (TAF) with domestic and national solutions, the prototype missiles armed with warheads similar to the tactical configuration were test-fired against high-speed live targets in the first half of October 2019. These tests provided critical information about the System Level Integration and testing process, which enabled significant progress in the development of the project. The Serial Production contract is expected to be signed by the end of 2019 or the first quarter of 2020 to meet the October 2020 entry into service schedule target in the HİSAR-A Project.

Issue 96

Within the scope of test-firing activities carried out by Aselsan and Roketsan at Aksaray HİSAR Test Range with the participation of the Presidency of Defence Industries and Turkish Armed Forces representatives, the effectiveness of the HİSAR-A Low Altitude Air Defence Missile System was successfully tested at maximum range and altitude by destroying a high-speed target (Banshee Jet 80) aircraft. During the firing test, the HİSAR-A system detected and tracked the high-speed target with its onboard 3D Aselsan MAR radar, then the command and control system initiated the engagement sequence, and the missile was fired automatically by the fire control system at the most appropriate time. The missile was guided towards the target by the data provided by the HİSAR-A Self-Propelled Autonomous Low Altitude Air Defence Missile System, and in the terminal phase, the missile itself identified and tracked the target independently by activating its IIR seeker. The HİSAR-A missile approached the target using its IIR seeker and successfully destroyed the Banshee Jet 80 target aircraft, which was traveling at about 600km/h, by detonating its warhead.

On October 12, 2019, President of the Defence Industries, Prof. İsmail DEMİR, announced the successful result of the firing test on his Twitter social media account and stated that serial production would begin soon. “The HİSAR-A Low Altitude Air Defence Missile System, developed nationally and domestically by Aselsan and Roketsan under SSB management, successfully destroyed the target with 100% success in the final system tests. Serial production will start soon. Congratulations, and good luck.”

In the HİSAR-A Project, the Requirements Definition (Phase-1), System Design (Phase-2), and the Subsystem Development and Testing (Phase-3) phases have been completed successfully, and the System Integration and Testing Phase (Phase-4) studies are continuing. In the project, the ground system operation tests were completed in October 2019. On the other hand, in the HİSAR-O Project, the Requirements Definition (Phase-1) and the System Design (Phase-2) Phases have been successfully and the Subsystem Development and Testing (Phase-3) studies were completed. The ground systems  and missile subsytems integration activities have been completed on the project schedule

Firing Tests

The €193 Million + ₺278,371 Million valued Low Altitude Air Defence Missile System (AİHSFS/HİSAR-A) and the €132,113 Million + ₺250,720 Million valued Medium Altitude Air Defence Missile System (OİHSFS/HİSAR-O) Design and Development Contracts, were signed between the SSB and the Main Contractor Aselsan on 20 June 2011. 

According to the public information reflected in the media, 11 firing and target tracking tests have been conducted so far within the framework of the HİSAR Projects Missile Development Test Program, which is the first national and domestic air defence missile systems of Turkey. Within the scope of these tests, different numbers of HİSAR-A and HİSAR-O Ballistic Test Missiles (BTM), Controlled Test Missiles (CTM, autopilot/autonomous control but no IIR seeker and TVC), Guided Test Missiles (GTM, Dual Pulse Rocket Motor with TVC capability), and Seeker Guided Test Missiles (SGTM, IIR Seeker activated but no warhead), were fired from the Fixed Firing Platform, Self-Propelled Autonomous Low Altitude Air Defence Missile System and Missile Launching System (MLS) via vertical launch and slant launch techniques and their effectiveness were evaluated in predetermined scenarios. During the tests, catapult-launched target aircraft from domestic and foreign companies were used to simulate low and high-speed aerial targets. Within this framework, four different types of propeller and turbojet engine target aircraft, including QinetiQ product Banshee and Banshee Jet 80 and İVME Unmanned Aerial Systems product Cengâver, were used during tracking and live-fire tests.

October 6, 2013 – HİSAR-A

Ballistic Test Missile (BTM) firing test, the first flight test within the scope of the HİSAR-A Project, was conducted on October 6, 2013.

July 23, 2014 – HİSAR-O

Ballistic Test Missile (BTM) firing test, the first flight test within the scope of the HİSAR-O Project, was conducted on July 23, 2014.

June 19-24, 2015 – HİSAR-A 

The Controlled Test Missile-1 (CTM-1, autopilot control) and Ballistic Test Missile-2 (BTM-2, Dual Pulse Rocket Motor capability, a first in Turkey) firing tests of the HİSAR-A system were successfully carried out by Roketsan on June 19-24, 2015 in Aksaray, with the participation of the Turkish Land Forces Command, the Presidency of Defense Industries, and Aselsan officials. During the tests, HİSAR-A Missiles successfully left the launcher with their first stage engines, then activated their second stage engines in the air, and completed their flights successfully by performing the programmed maneuvers under the control of the onboard missile autopilot system. 

November 23-December 8, 2016 – HİSAR-A and HİSAR-O System Level

Within the scope of the HİSAR Projects System Integration Tests, 4 HİSAR-A Controlled Test Missiles (CTM, slant launch), 3 HİSAR-A Guided Test Missiles (GTM, vertical launch), and 3 HİSAR-O Controlled Test Missiles (CTM) were fired from the Fixed Firing Platform (slant launch) and Missile Launching System (MLS, vertical launch) during the firing tests conducted between November 23 and December 8, 2016, at the Ministry of National Defense Firing Test and Evaluation Centre (ATDM) in Aksaray, south of Tuz Gölü, and the effectiveness of the missiles were evaluated in predetermined scenarios.

July 2017 – HİSAR-A and HİSAR-O System Level

In July 2017, flight (target aircraft used) and firing tests were conducted within the scope of HİSAR Projects carried out by the Presidency of Defense Industries to meet the air defense needs of the Turkish Land Forces. During these tests, the Aselsan 3D Mobile Search Radar (MAR) was also actively operated for the first time. The MAR radar serves as the main sensor of the HİSAR-A Self-Propelled Autonomous Low Altitude Air Defense Missile System (KMOAİHSFS), which is one of the two configurations of the HİSAR AİHSFS. The other configuration is the Missile Launching System (MLS). In addition to detecting and tracking targets, MAR also provides midcourse guidance data required by the missile during flight. The radar, command control/fire control, electro-optic, and communication elements of the HİSAR Systems were also tried the first time during the firing exercise, where the control and guidance capabilities of the highly maneuverable HİSAR-A GTM and HİSAR-O CTM Missiles were tested. Thus, significant progress was made regarding the system-level integration and testing process. Within the scope of the firing exercise, target detection/tracking, command control/fire control, and midcourse guidance tests of the missile were successfully conducted with the target aircraft. In addition, a HİSAR-O (CTM) missile was launched vertically for the first time, and its 360-degree protection capability was successfully tested.

January 22-February 4, 2018 – HİSAR-A and HİSAR-O

Within the scope of the HİSAR Projects, the first firing tests of 2018 were carried out at the Aksaray Test Range with the HİSAR-A CTM and HİSAR-O BTM missiles in January 22-February 4, 2018. The testing altitude was stated to be 14,000 feet (4,267 meters). 

May-June 2018 – HİSAR-O

Within the scope of the HİSAR Projects, missile-firing tests were conducted between May 21-June 9, 2018. The testing altitude was stated to be 14,000 feet (4267 meters). HİSAR-O BTM test-firing activities were successfully carried out with the Missile Launching System (MLS).

October-November 2018 – HİSAR-A

Under the HİSAR-A Design and Development Project, HİSAR-A Seeker Guided Test Missile (SGTM) shooting tests (slant launch) were successfully carried out from the KMOAİHSFS and Missile Launching System (MLS) during the firing tests performed in October-November 2018. In this context, the first HİSAR-A Seeker Guided Test Missile (SGTM) firing test was conducted on October 31, 2018, and the third firing test was carried out successfully on November 13, 2018. During the firing scenario conducted with two aerial targets, the first target was detected and tracked successfully with the IIR seeker, then the missile was directed to the second target. The target tracking capabilities of the missiles were verified during the firing tests, which were carried out with propeller-driven Banshee target aircraft.

The design verification phase of the infrared seeker was successfully completed by conducting rigorous performance, environmental, and hardware-in-the-loop (HWIL) tests in the laboratory environment.

Additionally, HİSAR-O Data Link Subsystem design verification activities were completed, and during the firing tests performed in October 2018, the missile successfully established communication through the Data Link.

March 2019 – HİSAR-A

The firing tests performed with the participation of Aselsan Fire Control System (FCS), KMOAİHSFS (slant launch) and Missile Launching System (MLS, vertical launch). During the test campaign both HİSAR-A Unarmed Seeker Guided Test Missile (SGTM) and HİSAR-A CTM-3 missile were fired and the vertical launch test of the HİSAR-A CTM-3 missile from the MLS was carried out for the first time.

To test the maximum range and altitude performance of the HİSAR-A System and beyond, two Banshee Jet 80 high-speed target aircraft approaching from different ranges and altitudes were used in various attack scenarios. 

During the test campaign, HİSAR-A engaged the high-speed targets, which were detected and tracked by the FCS, with vertically and slant launched missiles from the MLS and KMOAİHSFS, and the missile orientation to the first target, midcourse guidance with radar information, target detection/tracking with the seeker, and target approach with terminal guidance were tested. Subsequently, with the re-engagement command from the FCS-MLS, the missile was directed to the second aerial target, and the detection, tracking, and terminal guidance phases were successfully carried out.

In this context, after launched vertically, the HİSAR-A missile flew to the first target and locked on the target aircraft. Within the scope of the planned flight scenario, the missile continued its maneuvering toward the second target after successfully passing by the first target closer than the expected distance. The HİSAR-A missile, which passed by the second target in accordance with the scenario, carried out the planned acceleration and aileron commands in the final stage of the flight. After the entire firing test scenario was successfully completed, the test activity was terminated safely via the flight termination system.

Following integrated and functional testing of all the subsystems and support equipment (except the warhead) of HİSAR-A with dual pulse motor, Turkey took its place among the few countries having this technology in the world. Briefly, during the firing tests:

•Closed-loop flight (fly-by-wire feedback control) was performed for the first time,

•The Laser Approach Sensor, which will be produced in Roketsan facilities in the following years, was used for the first time,

•The Gas Distribution System (for IIR Seeker's pre-launch cooling requirement) and Missile Interface Unit, which was integrated by Roketsan into the Missile Launching System, were used functionally in the test activities,

•HİSAR-A successfully performed its maneuvers with domestically produced DC motors, and

•The extremely challenging two-target test scenario was successfully completed, and all the necessary data were collected. 

The integrated system level of the HISAR-A Missile reached the product and production line qualification phase with the successful completion of the firing tests, where all tactical elements are used, and critical capabilities such as vertical launch, slant launch, automatic engagement/firing, and terminal guidance are tested. After that, the test-firing phase against live targets was started with prototype missiles armed with warheads similar to tactical configuration.

May 2019 – HİSAR-O

Within the scope of the firing test, two Banshee Jet 80 high-speed target aircraft were launched from catapults at the Aksaray HİSAR Test Range. The HİSAR-O System first detected, identified, and tracked these high-speed targets, and then launched its missile from the MLS. During the slant launch test, different parameters such as target approach, radar lock, and seeker performance were evaluated. After the evaluation, it was stated that the system performed 100%, and the launch test was highly successful.

October 2019 – HİSAR-A

Within the scope of the HİSAR-A Air Defense Missile System Project, the prototype missiles armed with live warheads similar to tactical configuration were test-fired against high-speed live targets in the first half of October 2019.

According to the Ministry of National Defence 2017 Annual Report, the first HİSAR-A System is expected to enter the inventory in October 2020, and the first HİSAR-O System in May 2021 and the serial production phase is planned to be completed in 2025 (HİSAR-A) and 2024 (HİSAR-O).

Additionally, the first system in the SİPER National Long-Range Regional Air and Missile Defence System Project, which is co-developed by TÜBİTAK SAGE, Aselsan and Roketsan under the leadership of the Presidency of Defence Industries (SSB), is planned to be delivered at the end of 2021