Upgraded satellite will be operable for 35 years and will serve not only Turkiye but also countries in Africa, Asia and Europe.

Turkey’s new telecommunication satellite Turksat 5B was launched by the US aerospace company SpaceX.
Turkey’s new telecommunication satellite Turksat 5B was launched by the US aerospace company SpaceX. (AA)

Turkiye has successfully launched its new telecommunication satellite Turksat 5B.  

The communications satellite lifted off from Space Force Station's Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Space Force Base in Florida with a Falcon 9 rocket, US private spaceflight company SpaceX announced on Sunday.

Ankara aims to use the satellite – which will operate for 35 years – not only for communication means but also commercial sectors such as maritime and aviation.

The satellite, produced by Airbus, was transferred from France to the US, Turkiye’s Transport and Infrastructure Minister Adil Karaismailoglu said during a news conference in the capital Ankara.

The satellite that was produced with a contribution from Turkiye’s domestic industry, will reach its orbit within 164 days, Karaismailoglu stated.

The new satellite will be the country's most powerful satellite that will increase the broadband data capacity and it will serve not only Turkiye but also countries in Africa, Asia and Europe.

Turkiye's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said the country's communication capacity will increase 15 fold and the satellite will help expand coverage rate. 

A drone ship was stationed east of Florida for hosting the booster's landing.

The Turkish government is set to launch an upgraded and domestically produced satellite Turksat 6A in 2023.

READ MORE: 'Turkiye aims to strengthen its presence in space'

Cooperation with Elon Musk

President Erdogan in a video conference with Elon Musk, the founder of electric carmaker Tesla and space exploration company SpaceX, thanked the spaceflight company for helping with the launch of Turksat 5A, a prior Turkish communications satellite.

In Thursday's meeting, Erdogan and Musk discussed a number of issues ranging from the digital economy, Turkey's National Space Program and the country's first domestic electric car TOGG, Turkish presidency statement said.

"We'll gift you with an NFT (non-fungible token) of satellite art created by 5,000 of our children," Erdogan said.

Musk expressed gratitude for the gift, saying that he looks forward to "launching the satellite and doing many things with Turkiye in the future."

READ MORE: Turkey unveils National Space Program including 2023 moon mission

Source: TRTWorld and agencies