Turkey Upgrades F-16 Fighter Jets with Mission Computer System Made in Domestically

Turkey Upgrades F-16 Fighter Jets with Mission Computer System Made in Domestically
Turkey Upgrades F-16 Fighter Jets with Mission Computer System Made in Domestically 

Ankara - Turkey is increasing the capabilities of its F-16 Fighting Falcon fighter jets with a domestically made mission computer system codenamed MGB. This is a Turkish Air Force program to upgrade F-16 Block 30 fighter jets to the more advanced Block 70.

The MGB's mission computers serve to expand the capabilities of F-16 pilots through the latest avionics infrastructure. Turkish F-16s will receive a new console with multifunction color display. Turkey will also upgrade the "friend-foe" system. A Turkish source said the domestically made "friends-enemy" system is equivalent to NATO's KY58 and KY100.

Turkey refers to this system as IFF Mod 5/S which is like the NATO system, it provides encrypted communications and links. The creation of the MGB mission computer is part of Ankara's plans to make the Turkish armed forces more independent, not dependent on foreign manufacturers and suppliers. "Turkey will receive its first F-16 upgrade this year," said Professor Ismail Demir, President of the Defense Industry Agency (SSB).

The third important component that will help upgrade the Turkish F-16s is the replacement of the new radar. Turkey's obsolete F-16 Block 30 fighter jet radar will receive the MURAD AESA radar designed and manufactured by Turkish company Aselsan.

Turkey claims that the MURAD AESA radar has better detection and targeting than its US competitor, the APG-83 radar. Bosphorus media reported that a total of 79 F-16 Block 30 fighter aircraft of the Turkish Air Force will be modernized under Turkey's Ozgur program.

The MGB mission computer was first introduced by the Turkish Minister of Industry and Technology Mustafa Varank before parliament in November 2022. Quoted from the Anadolu Agency (AA) website, the MGB mission computer is designed to be the "brain" of Turkey's 5th generation fighter aircraft.

The mission computer was designed by the Research Center for Informatics and Information Security Advanced Technologies (BİLGEM) of the Türkiye Scientific and Technological Research Council (TÜBİTAK). Later this mission computer was delivered to the Turkish Aerospace Industry (TAI). This increase makes the capabilities of the Turkish F-16 fighter jets more sophisticated and extends their service life.

Most importantly, Turkey is not completely dependent on mission computer systems made by other countries and can be applied to TAI's 5th generation fighter aircraft.

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