The Gotkurk-2 satellite was jointly developed by Turkey’s Space Technologies Research Institute and Turkish Aerospace Industries. The optical imager on the satellite was provided by South Korea. The earth observation satellite will be used mainly for environmental protection, mineral resource exploration, urban planning and disaster monitoring and management.
The 400-kilogram satellite has a ground resolution of 2.5 meters, and a 15 gigabyte image storage capacity. The satellite joins the Rasat satellite that was luanchd via Russia, and that has been providing 7.5 meter resolution imagery. The country’s defense forces have purchased another satellite from European companies Thales Alenia Space and Telespazio. That 1,000-kilogram satellite is along the lines of the Pleiasdes satellite with a resolution of 70-centimer black and white and 2.8 meters color.
The Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan watched the launch live from giant screens along with hundreds of Turks. “It is a historic moment for our nation,” he said following the launch. “In the past we did send satellites to space but Gokturk-2 has proven that we are now a country with a claim in this field. We are rising to position ourselves as one of the 25 countries which are capable of producing their own satellites.”
Turkey has indicated that they aim to become one of the few countries with its own launch pad, joining the competition with China and other nations. China has successfully marketed itself as an international launch provider as earlier in September a Chinese rocket launched a Venezuelan earth-observation satellite
Sources: Global Times, Space.com