thyssenkrupp Marine Systems in Turkey

thyssenkrupp Marine Systems has world-market leadership in non-nuclear submarines, tailored solutions for frigates and corvettes based on the MEKO® concept, naval ship repairs and modernization, components’ development and integration: whatever your needs in naval technology, thyssenkrupp Marine Systems can meet them. Four OPERATING UNITS – Submarines, Surface Vessels, Naval Electronic Systems and Services– make up thyssenkrupp Marine Systems. Though each OPERATING UNIT is responsible for its own product management and projects, you benefit from the synergy effects derived from the bundling of resources, skills and capacities. Sales of all thyssenkrupp Marine Systems products are realized via a single centralized organization.

Issue 91 - May 2019

thyssenkrupp and its predecessors have a longlasting partnership with Turkey, starting even much earlier than the first the official representation of the Company in 1914. Over the time, different shipyards have belonged to what is now known as “thyssenkrupp Marine Systems”; famous brands like Blohm+Voss (BV) or Howaldtswerke-Deutsche Werft (HDW) are known and relied on all over the world and especially in Turkey.

Upon entering World War-I as an ally with Germany, six navy officers along with other officers were sent to Germany. During the course that started with the German submarine named “Vulkan”, Turkish officers participated in various dives and trials with various submarines. At that time, it was planned to give 10 submarines to the Turkish Navy and even portrayed the Turkish flag on the ships. However, this promise could not be fulfilled when the war ended with defeat.

With first tries even starting earlier, the first two submarine ships of 674 tons with German design were ordered to the Netherlands in 1925. These submarines which were named “I. İnönü” and “II. İnönü”, were brought to Turkey after the completion of the construction at Fijenoord Shipyard in Rotterdam (established by Krupp Germaniawerft) in 1928. In fact, these ships were submarines built on the basis of German UB-III design. Since it was prohibited to build submarines under the Treaty of Versailles in Germany, German design and know-how had been transferred to the Netherlands.

By 1935, some German submariners made on job training on board submarines of the Turkish Navy, when Germany accelerated the construction of submarines after being released from the Treaty of Versailles. After these submarines, when a German design submarine (Type 1A) was put on sale because of the Spanish Civil War in 1936 (Submarino E-1), Turkey has purchased the ship and she joined the Navy with the name TCG Gür. Same year, four more submarines were ordered to Krupp Germaniawerft. From these ships, the 1375-ton mine-laying submarine Batıray and the 1210-ton attack submarine TCG Saldıray were built in Germany; TCG Atılay and TCG Yıldıray attack submarines of the same tonnage were built at the Taşkızak shipyard in İstanbul. However, TCG Batıray was appropriated by Germany and not given. TCG Yıldıray was able to enter service only after the war because of the late arrival of the main engines. 

In 1937, Turkey bought the motor yacht “Savarona” which was built by Blohm + Voss and acquired for Kemal Atatürk (until 2002 largest yacht worldwide).

TCG Atılay and TCG Saldıray entered service in 1939, however; TCG Atılay was struck by a mine and sunk at the exit of the Çanakkale Strait (Dardanelles) on 14.7.1942. TCG Yıldıray and TCG Saldıray stayed in service until 1958.

While the military aid of the United States continued in terms of platforms, the other stage for the Turkish submarines began with the introduction of the AY class (Type 209) submarines (TCG ATILAY, TCG SALDIRAY, TCG BATIRAY, TCG YILDIRAY, TCG DOĞANAY, TCG DOLUNAY) built by (Howaldtswerke-Deutsche Werft (HDW) from 1975. Afterwards, a phase of building an upper model of the AY-classes at Gölcük Naval Shipyard began with the construction of Preveze class (TCG PREVEZE, TCG SAKARYA, TCG 18 MART, TCG ANAFARTALAR) in 1994. In addition to these, Gür class (TCG GÜR, TCG ÇANAKKALE, TCG BURAKREİS, TCG I. İNÖNÜ) submarines which were the Improved Preveze class have participated in the Navy from 2003.

In 1999, after the heavy earthquake effecting Gölcük area, Blohm+Voss provided 100 tents and thyssenkrupp Industries donated 1 mn EUR with which 42 earthquake-proof houses were constructed.

Between 1982 and 2000 a total of eight MEKO 200TN class frigates (TCG YAVUZ, TCG TURGUTREİS, TCG FATİH, TCG YILDIRIM, TCG BARBAROS, TCG ORUÇREİS, TCG SALİHREİS, TCG KEMALREİS) were built together as well.

Finally, the construction of 6 Reis class submarines started at Gölcük Naval Shipyard within the scope of the German design (Type 214) state-of-the-art New Type Submarine Project with air independent propulsion system.

thyssenkrupp Marine Systems has established longterm partnership with Turkish Navy, but with other Navies as well. Like previous brands Blohm+Voss as well as HDW, thyssenkrupp Marine Systems as leading player beneath and above the seas is available for future cooperation in all fields of naval business with navies all over the world