According to the statement made by TÜBİTAK, İMECE, Turkey’s first domestic and national high-definition imaging satellite, designed and developed by TÜBİTAK UZAY, whose client institution is the Presidency of Defense Industries, and whose end user is the Air Force Command, is funded by the Agency and the Presidency Strategy Budget Department. Then it was launched into space from Vandenberg Space Force Base in the USA at 09:48 Turkish time.

IMECE left its rocket at 12:24 Turkish time and settled into its orbit. Right after that, at 12.29, the first signal was received from IMECE.

The satellite will be positioned in a simultaneous orbit with the sun at an altitude of 680 kilometers, and will serve Turkey in many areas such as target identification, detection, natural disasters and agricultural applications during its 5 years of design mission life. The satellite will be able to obtain images from anywhere in the world.

Cube satellites were also launched into space

On the other hand, 50 more satellites, 4 of which are Turkey’s, set out on the same rocket with IMECE.

The imaging satellite AKUP developed by TÜBİTAK UZAY, the imaging satellite KILIÇSAT produced in cooperation with ASELSAN and GÜMÜŞ, and the internet of things and imaging satellite CONNECTA T2.1 cube satellites produced by PLAN-S company were launched into space in the same rocket. The first signal was received from the AKUP satellite at 11.02.

It receives support from many domestic technologies

The earth observation satellite IMECE, which was developed with national resources, was equipped with the experience gained from BİLSAT, RASAT and GÖKTÜRK-2 satellites.

The electro-optical satellite camera with sub-meter resolution, produced for the first time in Turkey, was developed by TUBITAK UZAY and integrated into IMECE. Thanks to this technologically critical camera, Turkey’s need for high resolution satellite imagery will be met with domestic resources.

In addition to the electro-optical camera at IMECE, flight computer, electric propulsion, orientation and trajectory determination, power and communication subsystems were designed and produced by TUBITAK UZAY.

In particular, flight computer software, orientation and trajectory software, analysis software, and ground station software were developed by TÜBİTAK UZAY engineers. TÜBİTAK UME’s magnetometer and magnetic torque rod and TÜBİTAK MAM’s fixed solar panel contributed to the IMECE satellite.

Export potential

The outputs obtained from the IMECE Project will form the building blocks of new satellites that Turkey will have in the future. With this project, in addition to the critical space technologies, the human power and knowledge gained in this field will also be gained.

With the space history of the equipment produced within the scope of the project, Turkey will gain the potential to export systems with high added value.

The IMECE satellite, which successfully passed thermal vacuum, vibration, acoustic and electromagnetic compatibility tests as of June 2022, was sent to the USA, where the launch base is located, in February.

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