Honeywell Turkey Delivering the Best Proven Engineering Solutions Worldwide

In this insightful interview with Serdar ÇETİNGÜL, General Manager Central & Eastern Europe and Turkey, Honeywell Aerospace, we discuss Honeywell’s integral role in bringing advanced capabilities to Turkey’s native defense industry and the exciting future outlook in building the future of the aerospace industry together.

Issue 99

Defence Turkey: Just before the IDEF ‘19 Fair you were appointed as the General Manager of Central & Eastern Europe and Turkey for Honeywell Aerospace.  Can you begin by telling us a bit about your new role and responsibilities?  

Serdar ÇETİNGÜL: Previously, I was Business Director for Turkey and Central Asia. With this new appointment I am now responsible for all aspects of the Aerospace Business, including airlines, business and general aviation and defense & space across 26 countries in Central and Eastern Europe and Turkey and Central Asia. In my new role, my top priority is to accelerate organic growth and find new opportunities for Honeywell Aerospace by ensuring our customers get the best possible and most efficient technologies to help bring value to their fleets and developmental programs.  

Turkey is an important growth market for Honeywell and is a part of what we refer to as “High Growth Regions.” It is a market in which I have a good deal of experience, across both public and private sectors. I also have background as an electrical engineer specializing in aerospace which gives me the ability to view things from both a solutions development and end-user perspectives.  I am extremely proud to be able leverage this experience in order to fully understand customer requirements as we develop comprehensive solutions that offer enhanced value to our customers, especially in Turkey. 

Defence Turkey: Can you elaborate on the structure, responsibilities and number of personnel working at Honeywell Aerospace’s Central & Eastern Europe and Turkey Branch that is based in Poland?

Serdar ÇETİNGÜL: Though an American company, Honeywell Aerospace is truly a global operation. We have a very talented team that is located across the globe including product development, engineering, integrated supply chain, and customer support. I am leading all aerospace efforts for the CEE and Turkey and Central Asia regions.  

Defence Turkey:  In your new position you are responsible for a broad geographic region for Honeywell Aerospace’s three segments, Defense & Space, Commercial Aircraft and Business Jets. Do you have any plans to initiate new collaborations between the Turkish Defense and Aerospace Industry and end users as well as companies from the region, which you oversee (which covers the Czech Republic, Poland, Romania, Hungary, Serbia and Ukraine – as well as Turkey and the Turkic Republics)?

Serdar ÇETİNGÜL:  We are constantly working on services and solutions that provide the best in experience and safety for our customers, which often includes collaborating with trusted local companies. Honeywell Aerospace products and services are found on virtually every commercial, business and defense aircraft. We build aircraft engines, cockpit and cabin electronics, wireless connectivity systems, mechanical components and more for both commercial and defense customers. 

Because our product portfolio is so broad, there are many opportunities for us to succeed in both Central and Eastern European countries and Turkey, where there are clear commitments from respective governments to evolve their organic aerospace industries through technological excellence. At Honeywell Aerospace we seek opportunities to partner with domestic companies in each of our markets to deliver advanced technologies for new and existing platforms, and to continue our tradition of transferring the skills and expertise to help them strengthen their own capabilities. Our Integrated Supply Chain team is very active in Turkey, looking for additional opportunities to leverage Turkish companies’ excellent capabilities. I am very optimistic about finding opportunities that help both regions by enhancing regional capabilities.

Defence Turkey: Can we please get an analysis of 2019 from Honeywell Aerospace’s point of view and could you elaborate on your targets and expectations for 2020? Do you expect any negative impact stemming from the globally spreading novel type Coronavirus?

Serdar ÇETİNGÜL: 2019 was very positive year, in terms of growth, for both our commercial and defense businesses within my region of responsibility. With constant improvements to safety, operational efficiency and maintenance capabilities, together with new product introductions and connected solutions, the future also looks positive. 

Honeywell continues to monitor the coronavirus situation and its impact globally. We are prioritizing the health and safety of our employees and are working with all our customers and suppliers to evaluate and minimize any potential disruptions. 

Defence Turkey: What could you tell us about the international presence of Honeywell Aerospace in the military rotary-wing sector, and the international programs that you have been involved in recently?

Serdar ÇETİNGÜL:  Honeywell has long been trusted and respected in the military rotary-wing sector. We have created a range of solutions, designed to enable and support mission-readiness for different missions such as VIP transport, firefighting, air ambulance, law enforcement, military, oil & gas and search and rescue.  Apart from providing Retrofit, Modification and Upgrade (RMU) technologies for helicopters to improve safety, lower cost, reduce pilot workload and increase mission success, we are on-board major helicopter fleets such as the UH-1, UH-60, T70, ATAK, CH-47 and T625. Honeywell’s key aim has been to enable the Connected Helicopter, much as it has enabled the Connected Aircraft. Our tried-and-tested technology solutions have been, and are being, adapted for rotorcraft, providing everything from in-flight connectivity to connected maintenance. 

Defence Turkey: What kind of new products do you see a demand for in the coming years? What types of new products and services can the industry expect to see from Honeywell Aerospace?

Serdar ÇETİNGÜL:  From a global perspective, last year we announced the launch of Honeywell Forge for Airlines and recently this year for Business & General Aviation, which continues to be a huge focus and has been a great success with our customers. Honeywell Forge is the most sophisticated analytics platform for airlines, which delivers efficiency solutions, drives higher profits and increases aircraft availability. We also made some significant strides in the Urban Air Mobility (on-demand and automated passenger or cargo-carrying air transportation services, typically flown without a pilot) space for avionics, navigation, flight controls and connectivity, working with some of the industry’s most innovative companies. We are seeing connectivity play an increasing role across the industry, something that we know will continue throughout this year and far beyond.

Defence Turkey: Can you elaborate on where Turkey falls in the strategies of Honeywell Aerospace, in out-sourcing and building up a global supplier network and how could Turkey improve its contribution? 

Serdar ÇETİNGÜL: We are constantly looking at our entire Honeywell portfolio, within commercial and defense products. If we see the opportunity to reduce cost or improve turnaround time or reliability by collaborating with the local industry, then we leverage existing capabilities and expertise, enabling companies to become part of our global supply chain. We have established very successful and strong relations with aerospace companies to date, which will continue in the future. 

Defence Turkey: Can you elaborate on the current status of collaboration between Turkish Defense and Aerospace Sector companies (such as Alp Aviation, Aselsan, TEI, TUSAS and Dormak) and Institutions (such as ASFAT) and Honeywell Aerospace? Do you have any near future plans to explore further opportunities to expand the extent of cooperation between Turkish companies and Honeywell and to sign further cooperation agreements with other Turkish companies?

Serdar ÇETİNGÜL: Honeywell’s long-standing technological heritage, combined with its understanding of business in Turkey, means it can bring advanced systems into the country that extend military capabilities and upgrade existing platforms and systems. This regional knowledge also allows Honeywell to align itself to the needs of Turkey’s growing domestic defense companies. Working with previously mentioned organizations to bring new, advanced capabilities to Turkey’s native defense industry makes for an exciting time building the future of the aerospace industry together.

Defence Turkey: You are providing CTS800-4AT turboshaft engines under the T625 GÖKBEY TLUH Development Program, of which the prototype stage is intended to be completed by the end of 2020. Can you elaborate on the current status of CTS800-4AT turboshaft engine deliveries to TUSAS- How many engines have been delivered so far? 

Serdar ÇETİNGÜL: Both T129 and T625 are strategically important programs for us from the engine perspective. Both platforms are essentially using the same engine. T129 ATAK is a very successful platform offering high performance and tremendous capabilities that deliver outstanding mission success. Our LHTEC CTS800 engines play an important role in this success. The next step will be the export of the T129 ATAK to other countries and we are actively supporting this initiative. In comparison to the T129 ATAK, the CTS800 provides superior performance, especially in high altitude and hot weather conditions, meaning the platform can deliver mission success in a wide variety of operating environments and therefore extending its attractiveness to a wider export market.

T625 GÖKBEY is the first native multi role helicopter development for Turkish Aerospace. The same LHTEC CTS800 engine has been selected as part of this important strategic national project. T625 made its maiden flight on 6th of September 2018 and will undoubtedly be another success story for Turkey. For the T625, we have delivered 10 engines within the development phase of the program. 

Defence Turkey:  Can you elaborate on the current status of ongoing efforts for the establishment of CTS8004A Engine Depot Level Maintenance (DLM) capability in Turkey. The SSB has identified TEI for this duty. Has the CTS8004A DLM facility established within TEI become operational? Who will operate this depot, TEI or Honeywell?

Serdar ÇETİNGÜL: This is another exciting program for us. With this project, we have an authorized channel in the region for the LHTEC engine, a 50-50 working relationship between Honeywell and Rolls-Royce. TEI will operate the depot and will be responsible for Depot Level Maintenance Capability for CTS800 engines. A depot stand-up phase program will be initiated in Q1 2020. LHTEC is working very closely with the TEI team to establish this maintenance, repair and overhaul capability alongside TEI. 

Defence Turkey: On October 14, 2019 Honeywell announced that they were finalizing a modernization solution developed for the T55 turboshaft engines, which are used aboard CH-47 Chinook helicopters. The latest version of the T55 makes numerous improvements to the previous engine including; over 20% more power at sea level, around 10% more power at high and hot altitudes and 9% less fuel consumption. According to the press bulletin the modernization solution will take the form of both a new engine and a more cost-effective kit to upgrade the existing engines to the latest version. The Turkish Land Forces currently operates T55-GA-714A turboshaft engines on its CH-47F Chinook Heavy Lift Helicopters. Do you have any plan to establish a DLM for this engine in Turkey and is there any interest from Turkish end users in your new T55 engine upgrade?

Serdar ÇETİNGÜL:  We are continuously at work to update and improve our engine systems, such as the T55, and this announcement was no exception. The modernization has seen improvements in reliability and maintainability, as well as lower maintenance costs. We do currently have plans to establish a DLM for the T55 in Turkey. We have seen interest from Turkish end-users who would like to seek improved turnaround times, and better support to ensure fleet readiness levels and sovereign capability for depot maintenance and overhaul of the T55 engines.  

Defence Turkey:  Honeywell has established a collaboration with Alp Aviation under the F-35 JSF Program to produce some complex mechanical parts of the aircraft’s landing gears. However, Turkey was officially excluded from the F-35 Lightning II JSF Program on July 16, 2019 as a result of the S-400 crisis encountered with the US Government. The local Turkish companies presently conducting production and deliveries, according to their work shares as part of the program with the best value approach, were excluded from the program after March 2020 (has not officially declared, yet). How has Honeywell’s existing cooperation with Turkish companies under the F-35 Lightning II JSF Program evolved or changed after Turkey’s partnership to the JSF Program was suspended?

Serdar ÇETİNGÜL:  Honeywell consistently evaluates its portfolio, across commercial and defense products. When we see an opportunity to make a difference and improve efficiencies, or offer cost savings, we work closely with our customer and partners to leverage existing capabilities and expertise. This gives companies the chance to be part of our global supply chain and is why we do not align our collaboration with the Turkish industry to specific projects. 

Defence Turkey: Can you elaborate on your short and long-term objectives, your vision for Turkey? 

Serdar ÇETİNGÜL:  Turkey remains an important growth market for Honeywell Aerospace. We remain very active in developing and manufacturing products that are utilized in our country. For example-- the AB205, AH-1, UH-1, UH-60, T-70, ATAK, CH47 and T625 helicopters and CN-235, T-38, Hürkuş, F-16 and C-130 aircraft all contain Honeywell products. Turkey’s government has made clear its objective of developing a truly indigenous, exportable defense industry. The benefits to the country are significant, enabling even more growth for Turkey’s increasing number of successful and capable defense and aviation engineering corporations. Becoming a global player requires partnership success between Turkish engineering giants and the world’s most successful, established and advanced technology manufacturers – companies like Honeywell. 

With a long heritage in Turkey, Honeywell is partnering with key players like Turkish Airlines, Pegasus, Turkish Aerospace, Aselsan, ALP Aviation, TEI, Roketsan and MNG Jet to bring new, advanced capabilities to Turkey’s indigenous defense industry in areas such as propulsion, power systems, navigation, guidance, air thermal systems, and retrofit modification & upgrades. Our goal is to be a trusted strategic partner that delivers added value every step of the way.  

Defence Turkey: Would you like to add any final comments or a message for our readers?

Serdar ÇETİNGÜL: Turkey’s position at the business crossroads of Western and Eastern Europe, the Middle East, and Africa makes it a strategically important market for Honeywell. We are engaging all key defense and commercial players, along with other operators across the country to show how our aerospace technologies can simultaneously lower costs, increase safety and mission success, and improve the passenger experience from check-in to baggage claim. 

Honeywell is very proud of its legacy in Turkey. Since first establishing our presence in Istanbul in 1992, we have grown to employ around 300 employees in three cities across the country and Turkey’s importance as a strategic region for our business continues to increase. Honeywell Turkey is committed to improving its customers’ business performance through increasing safety, reliability and efficiency by delivering the best proven engineering solutions available