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Turkish satellite experts attend AzerCosmos workshop

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan (left) and President of Azerbaijan Ilam Aliyev (right. Photograph courtesy of
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan (left) and President of Azerbaijan Ilam Aliyev (right). Photograph courtesy of

Experts from the Turkish Research Institute of Space Technology (TÜBİTAK UZAY) visited the Azerbaijani space agency, AzerCosmos, at their Baku headquarters on Monday, 13 June 2016, according to the Azerbaijani Ministry of Communications and High Technologies.

The experts from TÜBİTAK UZAY were trained by AzerCosmos experts on definition of satellite orbits, space maneuvering, and methods on extending satellite operational lifetimes. In turn, the TÜBİTAK UZAY representatives informed AzerCosmos officials about their plans to build ground-based space infrastructure, satellite control operations, management of low-earth orbit satellites, and the construction on Nano-satellites.

The two sides also recommitted themselves to cooperate on providing scientific and technical support in the manufacture of Nano- and Micro-satellites. This follows an agreement reached in February 2016 between TÜBİTAK UZAY and AzerCosmos to cooperate on manufacturing Nano- and Micro-satellites, as well as a wider space cooperation agreement signed between Turkey and Azerbaijan in 2015.

Turkey is developing its own indigenous space industry in order to achieve autonomy in the manufacture of strategic technologies such as satellites. TÜBİTAK UZAY has already built and operates the Göktürk-2 remote-sensing satellite, launched in 2012. Göktürk-1, a high-resolution earth observation satellite, is being built by Italian companies Telespazio and Thales Alenia Space, with the assistance of Turkish Aerospace Industries and is due to be launched later this year. Göktürk-3, on the other hand, is a synthetic aperture radar imaging satellite being built by TÜBİTAK UZAY and other Turkish entities and is due to be launched by the end of 2019.

Turkey is also planning to create a Turkish Space Agency in the coming months after receiving approval from the Cabinet of the Turkish government and the Turkish parliament. It is thought that the recent cabinet reshuffle made by President Erdogan will not impact the schedule for the Turkish Space Agency.

Both TÜBİTAK UZAY and AzerCosmos officials agreed to carry on their cooperative work into the future.

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