When It Rains

A full size mockup of the Anka with RMAF roundels were displayed at DSA 2018 with Deftech

KUALA LUMPUR: When It Rains. Deftech is partnering with Turkish Aerospace Industries (TAI) to offer the Anka MALE UAV for the Armed Forces. If the deal is approved six Anka UAV and a single ground station will be purchased, initially.

More details is available here (registration required)

A full size mockup of the Anka with RMAF roundels were displayed at DSA 2018

Basically this will be third maritime patroller to be operated by RMAF – together with the CN-235 MPA and the new built MPAs – if and when funding is made available of course. The Anka has an endurance of 24 hours and will be armed.

A scale of model of the Anka at Deftech booth at DSA 2018

I was told that a decision is expected after the general elections. With Turkish Aerospace already offering work for Deftech’s sister company, CTRM Sdn Bhd, the greenlight is almost expected. It must be noted that the Anka’s airframe is fully composite, the kind of stuff that CTRM makes and survives on.
If the Anka deal is signed, more cooperation between Deftech is expected with TAI including the TF-X – the Turkish fighter program and the ATAK A129 attack helicopters.

A full size mock-up of the Anka at TAI’s booth at DSA 2018

It must be noted General Atomics is also offering a PFI deal to Malaysia involving its unarmed Predator XP. With the Trump administration changing its rules regarding armed UAVs to non-Nato countries, General Atomics officials say Malaysia may well get the clearance to buy the armed version of the Predators including the B version in the near future.

— Malaysian Defence

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About Marhalim Abas 2185 Articles
Shah Alam


  1. The offered UAV will have satcom capabilities?

    The last i remember is that we are satcom needs leasing from France.

  2. Jadi inilah program ‘ketiga’ pesawat peronda TUDM..bravo,bagus,cantik,terbaik..
    seronok melihat ATM yang semakin serius dalam pembangunannya..semakin maju ATM

  3. Is RMAF considering with Anka or Predator. I prefer Anka cause it is Much Cheeper than Predator XP. If we Get Anka, We could so Can Join The TFX, T-129 and also Altay rather buying US or EU.

  4. Syabas ATM for moving towards the right direction in the procurement of sophisticated defence hardware and software. Hope to see more locally produce equipment to be procured through collaboration with Turkish & France consortiums. The more the merrier.

  5. Predator…

    If that is what they want, get them through EDA, as they are all retired from USAF.

    If national interest is no1, then go for the ANKA.

  6. ANKA-S is still prototype. If Malaysia still want to repeat the previous mistakes, then choose this one. lf ATM serious about what they want, Predator is agood buy. PFI will be a good choice to ease government spending. After all, let CTRM continue their work with the Aluddra/Scan Eagle. Any introduction of new type will make the whole program haywire… We cannot to waste a lot of money anymore…

    Aludra/Scaneagle is for ESSCOM

  7. Rumput – ”After all, let CTRM continue their work with the Aluddra/Scan Eagle.”

    Aludra is a short range system. CTRM has formed partnerships with several foreign companies to offer the MAF better performing, longer range and higher altitude systems.

    Rumput – ”lf ATM serious about what they want”

    If it was up to the MAF we would long ago have a fleet of bought off the shelf foreign designs and we wouldn’t be lagging in capability compared to Singapore or Thailand. Where we are now is a reflection of the challenges local companies have faced in delivering the desired capability. The idea or hope was that the local industry could meet most of our needs. We buying Scaneagle was due to the fact that Aludra Mk2 just couldn’t offer us everything we wanted in a short range UAS.

    Given that we already have short range systems; going for a MALE is the next course of action. What we have so far are operated under the Joint Force HQ and mostly in ESSCOM. The army’s intel corps use to have some Aludra Mk1s and I believe now have Camcopters; both leased. Logically, the next step would be to raise a tri-service UAS command to oversee UAS operations in other parts of the country. This command would ensure
    that those who need the intel/data gathered get it on time with as little bureaucratic, tri-service political issues as possible and avoid any role duplication.

    With regards to a armed system; getting one is fine but we also have to have a proper ROE mechanism in place. No point having a armed system if operators operating in a time sensitive scenario have to wait long for authorisation to fire.

  8. There are many advantages going with TAI Anka. First and more importantly, CTRM will get the offset work. Secondly this is a very capable MALE UAV that is offered to us, which is the S model.Its not a prototype as the Turkish AF uses it. Satellite comm means it can patrol out of line of sight , as needed for maritime patrols. Thirdly not being US means it can be armed in the future without all the political hoohaa. Remember Indonesia already has armed Wing Loong and Sings have the Heron. Go with Turkey.

  9. Lesson learned from non proven system. DONT BUY. Regardless whether it is for national interest or otherwise. Want we need at the end of the day is reliable system with reliable data.

    It was because of national interest we bought the Flankers, Baktar Shikan and MEKO A100

  10. Tom Tom “Thirdly not being US means it can be armed in the future without all the political hoohaa. ‘

    Generally, arming an existing UAV is not a simple thing. The missile has to be integrated structurally and with the UAV’s and ground station’s software. Meaning the manufacturer must have the integration codes from the weapon’s supplier. Both TAI and the user must have export approval from the weapon’s originating country. TAI would rather see us buy new pieces from them and have no incentive to help us arm the ones we’ve paid for, and that might even be cheaper than performing the modifications.

    For another thing, we have dragged our feet for many years and are in no hurry to get an armed or unarmed UAV now. We can get an unarmed Predator now and if we want an armed one, we can expect US export policy to be changed soon, as Marhalim noted. Several countries are already operating armed Israeli and Chinese UAVs so this puts pressure on the US to relax export control, since the policy only punishes US suppliers and does not keep the drones out of other countries’ hands any more.

    There are benefits in operating a system that has a wide user base and has been refined and proven in many years of operations.

    “First and more importantly, CTRM will get the offset work. ”

    I don’t think this should be the main priority.

  11. With LOS ground station, the limit to 200km plus radius and additional if we have relay stations.

    Logical step is to have satcom incorporated to increase it operation range limit. IINM, we have X-band com from measat sat

    From Butterworth AFB and land at Kuantan AFB

  12. AM, I think you miss the point that the Turks have a very well developed defence industry and have developed their own weapons for their UAVs. There is no need to get weapons from a third party.
    ‘Expect US foreign policy to be changed?’ Under Trump?? Ha ha, The man is an idiot lunatic. Turkey is a NATO European country and what they make is compatible with Western standards.

  13. AM,

    Personally I don’t see why we should be in any rush to get an armed system. That can come much, much later. First we have to have adequate numbers of systems, not just in ESSCOM and have a proper tri-service command set up in place to oversee UAS operations. If we don’t have a proper command to oversee things it will not matter what we buy.

    AM – ”I don’t think this should be the main priority.”

    Off course not but like it or not; it will play an important part.
    One reason we got into the UAS game late wasn’t only because of funding but because at a political level it was decided to give CTRM the opportunity to deliver something ”local”. To be fair to CTRM it has been busy in R&D over the years [unlike some other companies it hasn’t been idle] and has formed partnerships with various foreign companies to obtain stuff we don’t have locally.The problem is that once CTRM can deliver something ”local” with decent capabilities; the government mustn’t drag its foot.

  14. Tom Tom “AM, I think you miss the point that the Turks have a very well developed defence industry and have developed their own weapons for their UAVs.”

    You are entitled to your opinion, but even a well developed defence industry can have problems that are hidden from view. To an apolitical end user, thousands of combat flight hours will outweigh any marketing claims that a manufacturer and a sole user of a small number of systems can make.

    As it is, the Anka has not been armed, let alone has it fired weapons in combat. In the first place, we have little experience with unarmed UAVs and have no intention or requirement for an armed one.

    I was also disputing your claim that unarmed UAVs are simple to arm later, or if it cost effective to do so.

  15. The cake of UAV business is still under utilised in Malaysia. More opportunity is available out there. While regard should be given to CTRM in leading this industry, Malaysia shoul not be halt on just about the CTRM capability.
    lt is true that Trump policy is not to be rely upon. Nevertheless, if they offering something good for Malaysia, such as PFI concept which is not normal to US arms deal before, why not we try it. After all, Predator is battle proven and have a good system.
    If we are so concerned about the offset, with PFI, the offer surely include more that just buying the assets; such as the application of COCOM or GOCOM concept in the PFI. With this in hand, Malaysian industry will developed further. If the localcompany can maintain and service the Predator, we can go further with MRO after that.
    Talking about TAI product, the ANKA S is not matured in beyond line of sight operation. They have not fully developed the via-satellite control capability. Even if ANKA is MALE category, what good it has if it not proven to operate beyond line of sight.
    During DSA, it was make known that lndonesia is also looking fo XP. So do Vietnam and Philippines. If MAF is still dragging their feet, we will out-classed soon…

  16. AM,
    I never said UAV are simple to arm, merely if the Anka needed to be armed, then we don’t need to source the arms from a third country like the US. Of course if we could afford US top of the line Predator XP that would be great, but let’s be realistic here. Never in a thousand years would our budget allow it, so an Anka might just well what we can afford.

  17. Tom Tom – ”Turkey is a NATO European country and what they make is compatible with Western standards.”

    Turkey is a NATO country but it is NOT a ”European” country…. It has long wanted to be part of Europe; economically and politically but has been rebuffed. Also, not all that Turkey makes is ”compatible with Western standards” – at least not yet. A lot of what they make is still dependent of foreign technological providers.

    Rumput – ”While regard should be given to CTRM in leading this industry, Malaysia shoul not be halt on just about the CTRM capability.”

    And the MAF getting the capability it needs should not be dependent on CTRM’s ability to deliver. Unfortunately this has been the case. We were only forced to get Scaneagle because of Aludra’s limitations. We regards to buying a MALE; are we just going to get a few as an interim solution until CTRM can deliver a ”local” system? What happens if there are delays? Will this mean that we won’t be buying anymore foreign systems in order to give CTRM more time?

    Rumput – ”With this in hand, Malaysian industry will developed further.”

    I wish I shared your enthusiasm. Part of the reason the MAF is in the state it’s in is because priority has been given to the local industry; rather than ensuring the MAF has the desired capability. The result is hat neither the MAF or the taxpayer gets their ringgit’s worth.

    Rumput – ”we will out-classed soon…”

    We have lagged behind Singapore and Thailand in getting a UAS capability for years now.

  18. Azlan,
    You are right Turkey is difficult to define, it’s unique. However it’s military leans ‘Western’ due to its membership in NATO and even with TFX they have roped in the British via BAE. As I understand FNSS is even part owned by BAE.

  19. If anything, aludra shows that local expertise can only get us so far, despite having a relatively advanced manufacturing base and pool of trained human resource

    Countries like turkey, south africa or even indonesia have built their defence industry out of sheer necessity. They’re willing to put stuff like economic return in the back seat just to survive a war. Under normal circumstances, we don’t see how a battle taxi made from old 3 ton lorry or a heavily modified ww2 tank or using merchantile/commercial specs. to build patrol boats/cutters would make sense but they didn’t have any other option back then.

    God forbid we’d get ourselves into the same circumstances as them but the best next thing is to learn from them about how to build our own system or to improve upon our existing platform (like the aludra). Remember that it took them blood, sweat and tears to develop their own military industry and compared to that, we got the experience easily by sending our personnel and learn from their bitter experience

  20. Dundun – ”Countries like turkey, south africa or even indonesia have built their defence industry out of sheer necessity.”

    Actually the list should be Taiwan, Israel and South Africa [in the pre apartheid era]. All these countries were diplomatically isolated and surrounded by potential foes. All were forced to resort to various means to obtain what they needed. You can also include Pakistan, a country obsessed with India to the point that the military has priority at the expense of healthcare, education, etc.

    Tom Tom – ”However it’s military leans ‘Western’ due to its membership in NATO ”

    Ties are very strained now due to a number of factors, including over Syria where what the Turks are doing is at odds with what the U.S. is doing. Buying Russian has also annoyed Turkey’s NATO allies. The Turks also resent the fact that they’ve been denied EU membership.

  21. Good news. TAI is a proven platform.

    Next when MAF has the money (hehe) should invest in getting a military satellite up to space from TAI.

    Good job.

  22. Azlan,
    CTRM been busy? Busy making itself a local dealer, maybe. All these “local” company including CTRM is incapable of offering value added to the “off the shelve” let alone integrating systems by their own. That company that supposed to be busy, spent tens million sending a bunch of kids to France and Russia with big ambition. After 7 years, how many of these kids stayed in the company and how many those stayed growth beyond their textbook? The result is clear.

    The local industry development is always down to two main factors: scarce resource and clueless clientele.
    National level racial based policy handicaps the talent pool. And within the quota, the opportunity base is not large enough to have both shoelicker and talent co exist, which in this scenario, shoelicker always prevail. Their clientele’s erratic decision making also doesn’t help making any business case big enough, that these company can turn around and hire the talent or do real good investment. That sums up the market.

    But most important is that the clientele’s clueless has caused harm to their own and the industry. They are incapable of leading a project, which ironically produce the product they want. And combine with their painful experience, which caused by themselves by the way, they would rather go for an established vendor so that they are spoon fed with no immediate pain, and let the future problem be the next guy’s headache.

    Take for example, in the 80s via tech transfer we were able to do turbine power check on a full equipped thrust stand. 15 years later, the best we can do is replacing battery cells and drogue chute. For a simple toggle switch, they were incapable of taking lead in the certification to hire a in house engineer/local engineering firm to replacing it with a MS switch which is abundant in the market, instead they rather pay xk USD and wait for 6 weeks, for each occurrence. On the bright side of course, at least they learned well how to cannibalized one to serve the other.
    Purchase in accordance with national interest purchase is a fact for like 50 years? But being able to make most of whatever being thrown at is the basic dignity of a person(s). Otherwise, it is either sloppy or incompetent.

  23. Tom Tom “Turkey is a NATO European country and what they make is compatible with Western standards.” “You are right Turkey is difficult to define, it’s unique. However it’s military leans ‘Western’ due to its membership in NATO and even with TFX they have roped in the British via BAE.”

    Azlan “Buying Russian has also annoyed Turkey’s NATO allies”

    In the first place, Turkey was interested in the S-400 partly because it wanted technology transfer that the US would refuse to allow. It is obvious that Turkey is prepared to operate the S-400 and potentially its future localised SAM that are not compatible with NATO standards. Turkey’s concerns over a UAV not being NATO compatible seem small in comparison.

  24. No concerns when saudi and iraq is also buying S-400.

    Not to mention the korean KM-SAM system which also uses the S-400 missiles.

  25. “Not to mention the korean KM-SAM system which also uses the S-400 missiles.”

    Very different situations. South Korea is making their own SAM with Russian input, and it will be compatible and integrated in their networks.

    The S-400 will be operated as-is, and will not operate in Turkey’s networks but they consider this a price worth paying to acquire the technology. Likewise, Turkey would be willing to build and operate a UAV that is not compatible with Western standards.

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