The Turkish military manages a considerable, well-balanced naval force that includes frigates, corvettes and submarines. At least twelve attack boats currently (2018) make up the underwater fighting force and these are arranged across three distinct classes: Atilay-class, Preveze-class, and Gur-class. The Atilay-class features four boats and among their number is TCG Batiray (S-349) - commissioned in 1978.
The Atilay-class is a Turkish designation for the Type 209 group designed and developed in Germany exclusively for the foreign export market. The compact, economical, and single-hulled design was drawn up to help sell navies on the idea of a modern boat to help replace the aging and outgoing stock of World War 2-era submarines still in service in the early part of the 1970s. The Type 209 has proven a popular and safe investment and th eseries has been in active commission since 1971 with sixty-one completed to the standard. Operators proved plenty for the boat has been used by a plethora of navies worldwide - from Argentina and Brazil to Peru and South Africa. Turkey is the largest operator of the design with all three classes relayed to the Type 209.
TCG Batiray displaces in the 1,285 tonnes (submerged) range and is of conventional diesel-electric propulsion. Dimensions include a length of 211 feet, a beam of 21 feet and a draught of 20 feet. Aboard is a crew of about thirty-three. The propulsion scheme involves a diesel-electric arrangement outputting around 5,000 horsepower to a single shaft astern (4 x 120-cell batteries are also part of the power generation system). Maximum speed when submerged reaches nearly 12 knots while submerged going caps at nearly 23 knots. Range is a useful 11,000 nautical miles when surfaced and proceeding at 10 knots. The boat carries enough supplies to remain at-sea for a period of fifty days and the hull has been tested to depths of 500 meters (1,600 feet).
The ship's profile is traditional with a rounded nose cap and tapered end. The sail sits elevated at midships. Dive planes are set at the forward hull sides. The stern is capped by the multi-bladed propeller unit and a cruciform pattern tail plane arrangement.
Armament for the Type 209 boats is standard with 8 x 21" (533mm) forward-facing torpedo tubes being fitted. Up to fourteen torpedo reloads can be carried. There is also optional support for launching the UGM-84 "Harpoon" surface-to-surface, anti-ship missile and a built-in mine-carrying/mine-dispensing capability.
The Atilay-class boats are set to be succeeded by the newer Type 214 submarines, these having entered service globally in 2007. Six boats are being laid down for the Turkish Navy by local shipbuilder Golcuk Naval Shipyard.
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