STM completes Turkish Defense Industry Agency’s KERKES project

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Turkish defense company Savunma Teknolojileri ve Mühendislik (STM) has announced the successful completion of the Turkish Defense Industry Agency (SSB) KERKES project.

Launched in 2019, the project involved improving the ability of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) to operate in an environment lacking a global positioning system (GPS).

The KERKES project supports both rotary-wing aircraft, including STM’s Kargu drone, and fixed-wing drones.

Following the conclusion of Project KERKES, drones will now use artificial intelligence (AI) algorithms and computer vision techniques to undertake day and night missions.

The capability will allow UAVs to operate unaffected by electronic warfare (EW) adversaries, including GPS jammers.

In a TweeterSSB Chairman Dr. Ismail Demir said, “We have successfully completed the KERKES project, which enables UAV platforms to operate in environments where there is no GPS coverage.

“With this technology, which only a few countries are working on, our tactical mini-UAVs will be able to carry out missions without being affected by enemy electronic warfare threats such as GPS jammers.

“This critical capability that we have introduced to our country will serve as a deterrent for our military in homeland defense, and will be game-changing technology in combat environments.”

In order to execute the mission, the drones perform location estimation using a navigation technique based on object recognition and its deep learning capabilities.

The drone starts the mission with a loaded map, which is then compared to data on the ground.

According to STM Director General Özgür Güleryüz, the company has used its engineering capabilities to integrate this new technology, which can also be adapted to other land and naval platforms.

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