The SOM missile under the wing of the F-16 Block 40, exhibited on 100th anniversary of Turkish Air Force
Turkey says it is a year or less away from the mass production of its first domestically-made cruise missile as part of Ankara's plans to reduce defense reliance on foreign countries, Press TV reports.
According to TUBITAK-SAGE, Defense Research and Development Institute of Turkey, SOM missile, stand-off Muhimmat Seyir Fuzesi, which is an air-launched high precision cruise missile, will be mass-produced in 2012, a Press TV correspondent reported on Friday.
The missile is Turkey's first domestic solution for destroying both stationary and moving targets at a stand-off distance of over 180 kilometers.
SOM missiles use GPS as the primary mode of guidance complemented by an advanced Inertial Navigation System (INS) and a radar-based Terrain Referenced Navigation system, which allows the missile to skim the terrain during its flight in order to evade local defense systems.
TUBITAK-SAGE has developed the missile in three variants, with one model capable of carrying warheads. The missile could be mounted on Turkey's fleet of F-4E 2020 and F-16 Block 40 fighter jets. It could be also mounted on F-35 fighter jets, which are expected to be delivered to Turkey in the coming years.
SOM was first revealed during the 100th year celebrations of the Turkish Air Force (TurAF) at the Cigli Airbase in Izmir, on 4 June 2011.
According to the developer, the missile made its first guided flight in August over the Black Sea, covering more than 100 nautical miles using GPS/INS guidance. The missile successfully hit its target with high accuracy.