On September 22, the Defence Turkey Magazine shared photos of a Turkish-made Bayraktar TB2 combat drone equipped with the Aselsan’s Common Aperture Targeting System (CATS) targeting system.
The drone was spotted with the CATS system during the TEKNOFEST Aerospace and Technology Festival which opened its doors at Istanbul Ataturk Airport on September 21.
— Defence Turkey Magazine (@DefenceTurkey) September 22, 2021
The CATS is a high performance electro-optical reconnaissance, surveillance and targeting system designed for fixed-wing and rotary-wing airborne platforms, including drones, helicopters and aircrafts.
The system is equipped with a high definition day and infrared imagers as well as a laser range finder and a target designator.
The CATS system is meant to replace the Canadian Wescam CMX-15D system. The use of the latter in Bayraktar TB2 combat drones was disclosed during the 2020 Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. As a result, the export of CMX-15D systems to Turkey were halted while an investigation by Global Affairs Canada evaluates the use of Canadian technology in the conflict.
In response, Turkey’s Aselsan accelerated work on the CATS targeting system to replace the CMX-15D in Bayraktar TB2 combat drones as soon as possible.
The CATS system will allow Turkey to export and operate Bayraktar TB2 combat drones with much more freedom. Yet, it remains unclear if the system is on bar with the Wescam CMX-15D, whose specification played a major role in the success of the TB2.
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