General

Trkiye’s 1st homegrown communications satellite is fruit of decade of work

ANKARA: The project for Trkiye's first indigenous communications satellite Turksat 6A, set to launch on Monday, has been some 10 years in the making. Turksat 6A is scheduled for launch on Monday at 5.20 p.m. EDT (2120GMT), marking an important milestone in the project. Turksat 1C, the successor of the first communications satellite Turksat 1B, was launched in 1995, followed by Turksat 2A in 2001, Turksat 3A in 2008, Turksat 4B in 2014, Turksat 5A in 2021, and Turksat 5B in 2022. Turkish engineers took part in Turksat's construction of the 4A and 4B satellites, as well as in the design, production, and testing phases of 5A and 5B. Development of Turksat 6A The indigenous Turksat 6A project was officially launched on Dec. 15, 2014, beginning with the opening of the Space Systems Assembly Integration and Test Center established at Turkish Aerospace Industries facilities, in cooperation with Turksat and Trkiye's Defense Industries Agency. Turkish-based defense firms Turkish Space Agency, Aselsan, C2TECH, an d Turkish Aerospace Industries together with Turksat and Tubitak Uzay completed the satellite's construction. The preliminary review phase of the craft started in 2015, and the first critical review phase started the next year. The thermal structural qualification model was completed by 2017, and the second critical review phase began in 2018, while the engineering model satellite's construction started in 2019 and concluded in 2022. The craft's flight model's initial functional and thermal vacuum tests were done the same year. In 2023, Turksat 6A's flight model vibration and acoustic tests as well as its shock test and fit check were done. The craft's tests were officially finalized in 2024, and its mass properties were measured in April, followed by its delivery to the SpaceX facility in Cape Canaveral in the US state of Florida on June 4. With all the preparations completed, Trkiye's first indigenous satellite is ready for launch on board a Falcon 9 rocket on Monday. Source: Anadolu Agency