Interview with Dr. Tarık ÖĞÜT, Chairman of MILMAST

Dr. Tarık ÖĞÜT, Chairman of MILMAST

MILMAST is an engineering, technology and design company specialized in manufacturing carbon composite / aluminium Telescopic Mast Systems and Military Trailers.

MILMAST employs 90 people in a 14.000 sqm. facility in Ankara, Türkiye. Its focus is optimizing the performance of C4ISR systems, optical surveillance systems, fire control systems and communication systems with advanced integrated logistics support (ILS) services.

  • As the chairman of MILMAST, we would like to know more about your background.

I studied mechanical engineering at Technical University of Berlin in Germany. During my master’s degree and PhD thesis, I focused on analytical solution of rheonom vibration problems. My primary goal was to become a Research & Development scientist and I must say that I have achieved this goal to a certain extent. I spent 12 years in industry companies in Germany as an R&D engineer and consultant.

In 1990, although it was not my original agenda at first, I returned to my homeland Turkey in order to start my own business. The political climate in those years and the needs of the industry has fuelled my passion and allowed me to carry out this endeavour. To serve its purpose, I established FIGES, an R&D company which focused on numerical methods in applied physical sciences. In those years, various finite element codes were commercially available in the international market and I decided to become ANSYS Support Distributor in Türkiye due to my previous contacts with the ANSYS company.

Since its foundation, FIGES has carried out hundreds of projects for various industry companies mainly in aerospace and defence sector.

  • What would you like to share about your MILMAST and FIGES investments?

MILMAST has emerged from the needs of Turkish defence industry, especially by ASELSAN – the biggest prime contractor for the Turkish Armed Forces. In the past, Telescopic mobile masts to lift payload such as antenna and optical systems had been imported from Germany and USA.. Türkiye’s goal to become independent in aerospace & defence industry has been the key initiator to launch MILMAST project inside FIGES.

Due to R&D strengths of FIGES, electromechanical mast development for military applications has been relatively easy for our R&D team who employed extensive technologies such as finite element, multibody dynamics and model-based design not only for the optimization of design parameters but also to optimize the environmental tests in accordance with ‘Military Standards’ such as the MIL-810. This simulation-led product development approach made it possible to shorten the development period dramatically. Within two years, we were ready to start the commercial production. In the case of applying conventional product development approach, such a short schedule for development would not been possible.

As of today, although we are only a four-year-old company and yet we successfully delivered more than 600 products to our customers.

Since we had already delivered some products to the far-east of Türkiye, we have also started our export initiative.. We are also focussing on eastern European market such as Poland, Romania and Hungary in order to extend our efforts to western European countries. Our aim is to become the leading company for the telescopic mobile lifting systems in the international market.

SERHAT Mobile Mortar Detection Radar
SERHAT Mobile Mortar Detection Radar.
  • Could you give us some information about your customer-oriented solutions?

We do not provide off-the-shelf products to our customers because each project has its unique features. Our aim is to always provide the optimum solution for the customer. Unlike our competitors, we always ask our customers to provide the topology of the payload they need to raise. Since the geometry of each payload is different, the wind forces will be different which obviously affect translational and rotational displacements of the payload. Having signed a Non-Disclosure Agreement, the customer shares the solid model of the payload with us so that we can perform a Computational Fluid Dynamics(CFD) analysis. This analysis features the outcome of this numerical simulation which are static and time-dependent displacements of the payload. Should those displacements exceed the specification limits, a design modification of the mast will be done.

  • What are MILMAST’s goals for 2022

Our priority is to become an international player in the international military mast market. Our target markets are EU, Russia, Asia-Pacific and America. We are currently establishing new contacts and representatives in all those regions.

Seeing it as a crucial element for our success, we emphasize our company’s scientific approach at every opportunity. Hence, our marketing philosophy and sales focus are also based on this fact.

FTM-SD4 – United Nations vehicle program in Ghana, supported by Otokar
FTM-SD4 – United Nations vehicle program in Ghana, supported by Otokar.