Baykar’s KEMANKES (Alternatively KAGEM) jet powered loitering munition was revealed for the first time to the public in TEKNOFEST 2023 Istanbul. Having a very similar form with modern cruise missiles and AI supported Man-In-The-Loop guidance, KEMANKEŞ, which is the first product of Baykar in the field of loitering munitions, represents a new type of miniature stand-off munitions.
Being a jet powered loitering munition, KEMANKES has a far higher speed than the propeller driven loitering munitions of the same weight class; Mach 0.3 for cruise and Mach 0.7 for diving speed. Meanwhile the maximum launch range is in excess of 200 km, it should be noted that communication range between the launch platform and KEMANKES is 50+ km. Having an AI supported MITL (Man In The Loop) guidance via gimbal EO/IR system, it can be expected that other UAVs in the area or ATR (Automated Target Recognition) and autonomous cruise can be used for the control of the munition at longer ranges.
KEMANKES will be complaitable with Bayraktar TB2, Bayraktar TB3 and AKINCI UCAVs with its 30 kg weight. Which means even the lightest armed platform of Baykar, Bayraktar TB2 will be capable of carrying it on all four pylons without exceeding the current payload limit of 150 kg which is also showcased during TEKNOFEST 2023.
With KEMANKES, Bayraktar TB2 will have obtained a capability it didn’t have up to this point: stand-off attack capability. In addition to low cost and highly available munitions such as MAM-L, KEMANKES will provide Bayraktar TB2 and other UCAVs with a way to stay out of (and eliminate) the air defense threats. Stand-off attack capability will also have an importance for Bayraktar TB3 set to take off from TCG ANADOLU LHD this year. This can especially be useful for supporting landing and ASuW operations by targeting critical components of the enemy forces from safer distances.
Beyond the operational values, KEMANKES also represents the growing capabilities of other private companies in Turkish Defense Industry, best exemplified by the usage of 38 lbf IL170 turbojet engine of IdeaLab.
It should be noted that KEMANKES can also provide said capabilities for land/naval platforms and helicopters. The trend of integrating long range munitions helicopters has gotten a good amount of push following the realization of the need for stand-off capabilities for helicopters for the past few years. As it is known, helicopters are highly suspectible to poliferation of MANPADS and other SHORAD threats and long range-quick reach advantage of KEMANKES can be a way of overcoming such threats.