SpaceX Falcon 9 launches Turksat 5B communications satellite
SpaceX launched a satellite called Turksat 5B into orbit for a Turkish communications company.
The company’s Falcon 9 rocket took to the skies at 10:58 p.m. EST Dec. 18 (03:58 UTC Dec. 19), 2021, from Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station in Florida. This was the 30th Falcon 9 launch of 2021 and the second in roughly 15 hours.
Turksat 5B was deployed into a geostationary transfer orbit where it will use its own onboard propulsion to circularize its orbit into a geostationary orbit positioned at 42 degrees east longitude.
Operated by the Turksat communications company, which is owned by the Turkish government, is expected to provide TV broadcasting services and telecommunications to Europe, Turkey, the Middle East and geographical sections of Asia and Africa.
This mission is a follow up to Turksat 5A, which was launched earlier in 2021. It is also operated by Turksat and the Turkish government.
The 9,900-pound (4,500-kilogram) Turksat 5B spacecraft is Turkey’s most-powerful satellite to date with a design life of about 15 years. However, it has a next-generation electric-powered impulse system that could allow it to operate for 35 years, providing data transmission of more than 55 gigabits per second with Ka-band, Ku-band and X-band transponders.
All communication equipment for Turksat 5B was produced in Turkey before being transported to France for satellite integration and then on to the United States for launch.
The telecommunication satellite and high data capabilities are expected to help to establish internet communication in places not accessed by terrestrial infrastructure, according to Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure, Adil Karaismailoglu.
Turksat 6A, currently in production, is expected to launch sometime in 2023 as integration, assembly and testing of the satellite at Ankara Space Space Systems and Integration Test Center are ongoing.
Following today’s launch of Turksat 5B from Florida, as well as 52 Starlink satellites some 15 hours earlier from SpaceX’s California launch pad at Vandenberg Space Force Base, the company expects to fly a third Falcon 9 rocket Tuesday morning with the CRS-24 Dragon resupply mission to the International Space Station.
Liftoff of CRS-24 is currently slated for 5:06 a.m. EST (10:06 UTC) Dec. 21 from Launch Complex 39A at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida.
Video courtesy of SpaceX
Theresa Cross grew up on the Space Coast. It’s only natural that she would develop a passion for anything “Space” and its exploration. During these formative years, she also discovered that she possessed a talent and love for defining the unique quirks and intricacies that exist in mankind, nature, and machines. Hailing from a family of photographers—including her father and her son, Theresa herself started documenting her world through pictures at a very early age. As an adult, she now exhibits an innate photographic ability to combine what appeals to her heart and her love of technology to deliver a diversified approach to her work and artistic presentations. Theresa has a background in water chemistry, fluid dynamics, and industrial utility.