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Turkey entered the 21st century increasing efforts towards rapid economic and technological development, social change and infrastructure renewal. Naturally, this process places a heavy load on the current system, and the key is to find an area for development that can positively affect as much as possible the population. One of these new areas is space, which has become an important tool for protecting and improving the country, and it is a strategic expression of Turkey’s future.
On the other hand, Turkey does not have a national space agency which makes country's space exploration and research a bit more challenging. While establishment of a National Space Agency is on the way, the only government department related to the field is TÜBİTAK Space. Even without a national space agency, with the work done by TÜBİTAK Space, Turkey had many advances in space field in the past recent years. The most significant result of the work done by TÜBİTAK Space was the launch of the first Turkish earth Observation satellite (that is fully designed in Turkey), RASAT.
Young Space Activities Overview in Turkey
There are many space activities oriented towards younger people in Turkey. Three leading astronomy societies in the country (İÜFFAAK, Asart and Aster) are introducing space-related organisations to the public and have a primarily astronomy focus. During the International Year of Astronomy 2009, there were numerous outreach activities garnering the interest of the public. Even after the IYA 2009, these activities continued very frequently.
These efforts and the lack of a national space agency encourages universities and university students to take part in space. The greatest examples of these are BilSAT (an earth observation satellite designed by Middle East Technical University in coopeartion with TÜBTAK Space) and İTÜpSAT1 (a cubesat designed by Istanbul Technical Universtiy).
RASAT is the second remote-sensing satellite after the launch of Turkey’s first remote sensing satellite BİLSAT. RASAT, having a high-resolution optical imaging system and new modules developed by Turkish engineers, will be the first Earth-observation satellite to be designed and manufactured in Turkey.
RASAT's GoalsTo improve know-how from design phase to in-orbit commissioning phase of a satellite project gained from BiLSAT Project
- To develop space qualified systems using current technologies, and gaining flight heritage by succeeding in operating these systems in space
- To meet the requirements of Turkey in the sense of remote sensing as much as possible
- To investigate the current capabilities of Turkey for space technologies and to use as much as possible
- To increase number of qualified man power in the field of satellite technologies,
- To meet the requirements of Turkish space industry through development of critical modules
- To prove the space-based capabilities of TÜBİTAK UZAY to Turkey and the World.
Country-Specific Events in 2013
Interesting Web-Links for the Young Generation in Turkey