Baha UAV from Havelsan enters Africa with first contract for unnamed nation


According to an article by Overtdefense on August 9, 2023, Turkish defense company Havelsan has secured a contract to supply its Baha Sub-Cloud Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) to an undisclosed African country, marking the first instance of Havelsan exporting this drone to an African nation. The choice of the Baha UAV for deployment is likely based on its capabilities and potential contributions to the recipient country's defense strategy.

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Baha UAV from Havelsan enters Africa with first contract for unnamed nation Baha UAV from Havelsan enters Africa with first contract for unnamed nation (Picture source: Havelsan)


Veysel Ataoğlu, Director of Product Development and Production at Havelsan, mentioned the company's engagements with various nations during international exhibitions, particularly those from the African region. Havelsan engaged in discussions with these nations and conducted tests to meet their specific requirements, leading to the export of Baha to an undisclosed African country.

Despite the lack of detailed information about the recipient nation and the contract's financial terms, Havelsan has drawn interest from several African countries, including Botswana, Namibia, Nigeria, Zambia, Malawi, Tanzania, and South Africa.

The Baha, part of Havelsan's Sub-Cloud UAV series, is designed to provide extended intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) capabilities while ensuring cost-effectiveness and operational efficiency. The UAV underwent field trials after its introduction during Turkey's Anatolian Eagle 2021 Exercise. Feedback from these trials prompted design modifications in 2022, refining its size, weight, and payload capacity.

Notable features of the Baha include its fixed-wing design and the ability for vertical takeoff and landing. It utilizes a hybrid power system that combines a petrol engine for horizontal cruising and electric motors for vertical maneuvers.

Operating at altitudes of up to 15,000 feet, the Baha UAV offers an operational range of up to 80 kilometers and varying airborne times, depending on the engine mode. Its payload capacity of 5 kg adds to its versatility, enabling it to carry various specialized equipment for different mission profiles.

Havelsan envisions the Baha operating autonomously and collaborating seamlessly with other unmanned systems through the "digital unit" concept. This approach involves centralized control through a single ground control station, allowing for synchronized team operations and intercommunication between unmanned vehicles. Havelsan's ongoing testing of autonomous UAVs and unmanned ground vehicles for swarm operations aligns with this vision.