The Turkish Navy’s first light aircraft carrier, TCG Anadolu, will be the flagship of a more powerful fleet. Her large helicopter and UCAV (uncrewed combat air vehicle) air wing, as well as amphibious capabilities, will provide new capabilities to NATO’s second largest military.
The Turkish Navy will be better equipped to for overseas operations. Turkey is currently involved in the conflict in Libya, as well as Syria. The carrier will join locally built MILGEM frigates, Type-214 AIP (air independent power) submarines and a new class of indigenous attack submarine known as MILDEN. A second assault carrier, TCG Trakya, is also planned.
Anadolu combines the features of an aircraft carrier with those of a landing ship. This is termed an LHD (landing helicopter dock) in defense circles. Beneath her hangar is a 'well deck' which can be flooded so that landing craft can enter. The well deck opens at the stern. This is an increasingly popular combination and is typified by the U.S. Navy’s America Class assault carriers. LHDs can carry short take-off fight jets, and are commonly describes as light aircraft carriers.
She is currently being fitted out at the Sedef Shipyard in Istanbul. New photos show work on her island superstructure, which may have its radars mounted soon. She is expected to be commissioned into the Turkish Navy this year, earlier than originally planned. (end of excerpt)
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(EDITOR’S NOTE: Rather than a light aircraft carrier, the Anadolu is actually an LHD derived from the Juan Carlos 1 design developed for the Spanish Navy by Navantia, and also acquired by the Royal Australian Navy which acquired two ships, HMAS Adelaide and HMAS Canberra.)