President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan attended the launch ceremony of IMECE, Türkiye's first domestic and national observation satellite with sub-meter resolution at the TÜBİTAK Space Technologies Research Institute at the METU Campus on April 13. On the following day, IMECE was launched into space from the Vandenberg Space Force Base in California, USA by Space X-Falcon 9 rocket.
President Erdoğan proudly reminded the audience that Türkiye established the Turkish Space Agency three years ago to usher in a new era in space research. “We have already taken the steps necessary to elevate our country to the level it deserves in every discipline, from developing our own satellites to sending vehicles to the lunar surface and sending a Turkish citizen to the International Space Station," the President emphasized.
“Three of the eight communication satellites we launched into orbit successfully completed their missions. The remaining five communication satellites are in active service for our country. We are proudly sending our country's first high-resolution IMECE satellite into space as the herald of the Türkiye Century. We designed, manufactured, assembled, integrated, and tested all the subsystems required for the satellite," President Erdoğan added.
President Erdoğan emphasized that Türkiye is now reaping the fruits of its national technology initiative, which aspires to bring the country to the top echelon in the global technology league. President Erdoğan went on to say, “The global space economy reached USD 469 billion in 2021, up from USD 245 billion in 2009. This increases every day. In Türkiye, we are constantly upping gears. In addition to the investments made over the last two decades, we have started to take leaps toward our goals by announcing our national space program." President Erdoğan added that Türkiye has a solid background with its expert engineers, strong industrial capacity, growing number of early-stage companies, and talented scientists.
The satellite will serve the defense aviation, disaster management, environment, urbanization, agriculture, and forestry industries. Türkiye will be able to export the outcomes produced by IMECE.