Turkish Space Agency (TUA) President Serdar Hüseyin Yıldırım stated that the candidates determined within the scope of the project, which was started with the aim of sending Turkish astronauts to space in the 100th anniversary of the Republic, are working hard, and that the critical design phase of the vehicle that will go to the Moon has come to an end.

Serdar Hüseyin Yıldırım, President of the Turkish Space Agency (TUA), gave information about the works carried out by Turkey within the scope of the “National Space Programme”.

Stating that the program is progressing in all targets, Yıldırım said that one of the most important issues on their agenda is the first Turkish space traveler to be sent into space.


“We will make this launch in the last quarter, in the 100th anniversary of our Republic”

Expressing that the Turkish space traveler will stay in space for two weeks and perform 13 experiments, Yıldırım said that the training of two candidates, one primary and the other reserve, continues intensively.

Pointing out that the trainings are very comprehensive, Yıldırım said:

“Candidates receive training on several different subjects. In the capsule they will go to space, they need to receive training on procedures. In addition, training on the infrastructures to be used after going to space and the eating, drinking, sleeping and similar processes there are continuing. There is also a training on events that may occur during the launch. So our candidates are working very hard. Everything is going very well. Its citizen will be in space.”


The design work of the spacecraft that will go to the moon has been completed

Emphasizing that the progress regarding the domestic spacecraft to be sent to the Moon continues, Yıldırım reminded that the executive in this field is the TÜBİTAK Space Technologies Research Institute (TÜBİTAK UZAY).

Stating that the vehicle that will go to the Moon was prepared by TÜBİTAK UZAY, Yıldırım said, “The design studies of the vehicle have been completed, we are at the stage we call critical design, and this is about to end. Now the production will begin. Everything is fine here, too. Our first goal is to reach the Moon. After the first expedition, that is, in 2029-2030, we plan a soft landing. When the soft landing is made, the goal is to collect data there (to the Moon) and present them to the scientific use of our country.” said.


“TUA has come a long way in a short period of time”

Pointing out that TUA is one of the stakeholders of the “Space Apps Challenge-International Space Applications Competition” organized by NASA this year, Yıldırım made the following assessment regarding this development:

“This competition is an important competition organized by NASA, which actually attracts the attention of young people. We are here as a member of the jury, we support it. The fact that TUA has been invited here shows that our Agency has gained a good place and a serious reputation in the world, in the international field and in the space community with the work it has done so far and the National Space Program it has put forth. The support of our state is also evident, I hope we will go further.”

Yıldırım also touched upon the importance of the Anatolian Planet Rover Challenge, the second of which was organized by the Space Exploration Society (UKET) this year with the support of TUA, and will end on Sunday, July 23, at the METU campus.

Pointing out that such competitions contribute to the development of Turkey, Yıldırım said, “With these competitions, we both encourage our youth and raise awareness in the international arena.” he said.


Turkish States Organization students will be hosted at the space facilities in Bursa

Pointing out that the Organization of Turkish States is working with member and observer countries, Yıldırım stated that they are carrying out two joint projects in this context. Yıldırım stated that the first of these projects was to make a common cube satellite.

Informing that the second project will take place at the end of August, Yıldırım said, “With our organization, at the end of next month, 10 students from all these countries will come to Turkey with their teachers at the beginning and will be hosted at the space facilities in Bursa. They will both receive training and mingle with each other. We have also implemented such a beautiful space awareness program.” said.


“We will make a representation with a strong team”

Stating that the International Space and Aviation Congress (IAC-International Astronautical Congress), which is the most comprehensive and largest meeting held in the world on space, will be held in Baku, the capital of Azerbaijan this year, Yıldırım said, “We also show a strong participation. When we are in Baku, it is of particular importance for us. We will make a representation with a strong team. We want this great meeting to be held in Turkey, we are candidates for it.” made its assessment.

Reminding that the “space initiative” was launched 4 years ago within the scope of the G20 studies, Yıldırım said:

“Everyone sees that nothing will happen without space. The G20 countries also saw that it should be handled under a separate heading. We have been participating in this initiative since it first started. There were very good contacts at the meeting held in India. We came back from there with a successful representation. This makes us proud for our country.”


“Staying out of the developments in space would be a loss for Türkiye”

Yıldırım emphasized that everyone, especially young people, should support space studies.

Stating that Turkey’s space studies are criticized from time to time, Yıldırım said:

“These are unfair criticisms because there is nothing without space anymore. Today, as soon as space systems are out of service, it becomes difficult to sustain life in the world, communication is cut off, many services become unavailable. Production, mining and tourism begin in space. There is a great development. Staying out of the developments in space would be a loss for Turkey and it would be difficult to compensate.”

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