Göktürk-II Launched Into Space

Date: Issue 38 - December 2012

After the completion of all processes and being ready to be launched, Göktürk-II had been sent to China from TAI premises on November 6th, 2012. Following the send-off, the functional tests of the satellite at the launching base were successfully completed. Turkey first declared the launching date as December 19, however due to the adverse weather conditions forecasted at the region where the satellite would be launched, it was set on December 18. After the satellite was fuelled and the satellite battery was charged by a special device designed by TÜBİTAK Space Technologies, the National Earth Observation Satellite was launched from Jiuquan-China at 18:12 Turkey time. Göktürk-II was orbited at an altitude of 686 kilometres at 18:26. The first signals were received at 19:39. TÜBİTAK officials stated that the normal operation of the satellite would begin following the deployment of panels. TÜBİTAK officials at launching base in China and at ground stations in Ankara and Norway watched the launch on a live broadcast.

At the time of launch, a ceremony was held at TÜBİTAK Space Technologies located at METU campus. Turkish Parliament Speaker Cemil Çiçek, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, Chief of Staff Necdet Özel, Deputy Prime Minister Bekir Bozdağ, Minister of Science, Industry and Technology Nihat Ergün, Minister of Transport, Maritime Affairs, and Communications Binali Yıldırım, Minister of National Education Ömer Dinçer, Minister of National Defence İsmet Yılmaz, Minister of Customs and Trade Hayati Yazıcı and TÜBİTAK President Prof. Dr. Yücel Altunbaşak watched the launch of Göktürk-II on a live broadcast.