Turkey's Technology Minister Celebrates New Era in Space Exploration

Turkey's Minister of Industry and Technology welcomed the return of the country's first astronaut from a mission to the International Space Station (ISS) on Monday, marking the beginning of a new chapter in space science and technologies for the nation.

Turkey's Technology Minister Celebrates New Era in Space Exploration

Addressing the arrival ceremony for Alper Gezeravci in Ankara, Minister Mehmet Fatih Kacir expressed that this space mission signifies just the start of Turkey's journey in space exploration.

"During the mission, 13 scientific experiments devised by Turkish scientists were successfully conducted by our astronaut under microgravity conditions in the laboratory facilities aboard the International Space Station," Kacir remarked.

"Our inaugural manned space science mission will yield significant advancements in research across various disciplines including biology, medicine, genetics, physics, and materials science."

Kacir highlighted that through Gezeravci's experiments, the effects of microgravity and space conditions on human health, physiology, and the immune system were studied extensively.

He underscored the mission's profound impact on instilling self-confidence in Turkish youth and children, emphasizing its historic significance.


Kacir outlined the country's objectives in space exploration, stating, "We will meticulously assess the findings from our manned space science mission and extend the necessary support for further research endeavors."

"We are preparing for our next astronaut mission and ensuring that our second astronaut will conduct scientific experiments during a suborbital flight. Additionally, we will embark on programs to conduct more scientific research on the ISS and bolster international collaboration," he added.

Kacir also mentioned plans for potential international partnerships in future manned space missions and the initiation of research and development programs for enhancing space stations and related systems.

Moreover, he announced the establishment of a space technology development zone in Ankara, aimed at fostering the space industry and securing a larger share in the global space economy.

Turkey's independent access to space programs will continue, including projects for the development of launch rockets and the establishment of a spaceport through international cooperation by 2030, according to Kacir.

"We are committed to our lunar program. We will reach the moon with a spacecraft engineered and constructed by our own engineers and scientists, equipped with a propulsion system developed domestically," he affirmed.

Strategic Gains

By completing the regional positioning and timing system project, Turkey will attain a strategic advantage, reinforcing its technological sovereignty in both defense and civilian sectors, Kacir highlighted.

He also noted that with the conclusion of the Eastern Anatolia Observatory Project, Turkey will possess the most advanced telescope in the region.

Turkey's Participation in Space Activities

During a press conference, Gezeravci expressed gratitude for the education and support provided by Turkey, enabling him to fulfill the mission.

"The unwavering determination of our president and all state institutions, functioning seamlessly like well-oiled machinery, ensured the success of this mission," he remarked.

Gezeravci extended his thanks to the personnel of the Turkish Ministry of Industry and Technology, Turkish Space Agency, and the Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey for their contributions to the preparation process.

"We are determined that Turkey will secure its rightful place in space activities. There should be no doubt about that," he affirmed.

Journey Details

Gezeravci participated in the Axiom-3 Mission alongside Italian, Spanish, and Swedish astronauts, launched from NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida on January 19 aboard a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket.

The crew docked at the ISS the following day, where they conducted over 30 scientific experiments during their stay. The capsule, carrying the crew, undocked from the ISS on February 7 and successfully splashed down off the coast of Florida on Saturday, concluding the mission.


Abdulkadir ŞEKER

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