Istanbul (XNA)
Dec 05, 2013

Turkey is keen on space cooperation with China, especially in lunar missions and outer space exploration, scientists said here on Wednesday after China’s launching of lunar probe Chang’e-3.

The scientists watched the launching of Long March-3B rocket, which carried Chang’e-3 lunar probe and Yutu lunar rover, on Monday.

“Turkey closely watches China’s lunar exploration programs,” Onur Haliloglu, Technical Deputy Director of Space Technologies Research Institute of Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey (TUBITAK), said in a interview with Xinhua.

Now Turkey with great enthusiasm waits for the latest information from Chang’e-3, Haliloglu remarked.

The scientist said the areas that Turkey and China should expand cooperation are satellite projects, lunar mission projects and exploration of the outer space.

Meanwhile, Director of Center for Science and Technology Research and Assistant Professor Celal Sami Tufekci in Yildiz Technical University Department of Mechatronics Engineering told Xinhua that Turkey could develop its partnership with China in designing astronaut programs.

“Turkey needs an astronaut program and in the near future I think that the two countries could expand their cooperation in sending astronauts to the space,” Tufekci added.

China has been investing a lot in space missions, Tufekci said. “It has been conducting very impressive programs and the Chang’e-3 is one of them.”

Tufekci also mentioned, China Space Station is expected to be operational in 2022, which would provide a good opportunity for Turkish scientists to cooperate with their Chinese counterparts.

“Turkey is at the beginner level in developing space programs and is ready to cooperate with China,” he remarked.

Speaking of space bilateral cooperation, Haliloglu said, Turkey and China are two senior members of Asia-Pacific Space Cooperation Organization (APSCO) and TUBITAK is an authorized institution of the organization in Turkey.

“TUBITAK has long been working with China in developing space projects and has enjoyed continuous support from Beijing for its ongoing programs. APSCO is an important agency in facilitating our cooperation,” Haliloglu said.

One of the important projects that TUBITAK has been working with China is the earthquake prediction.

“TUBITAK gets support from China in studying the ionic activities in the ionosphere to predict earthquakes,” Haliloglu said.

In addition, TUBITAK and China also cooperate in developing regional GPS satellites, he noted.

Source: Space Daily.