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eva winget SpaceX Launches Turksat 5A Mission From Falcon 9
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SpaceX is not just only a brand pioneering in space technology. It has shown its capability to deliver out-of-the-box thinking to create the quest for space-based innovations. If it is not in the news, then it is strange for sure because SpaceX is going through a series of space launches in recent times. After its last launch, SN8, in December, SpaceX started the new year with the launch of Turksat 5A. SpaceX used Falcon 9 to send the Turkish communication satellite Turksat 5A in the geostationary orbit. Let’s explore more information about the launch, the satellite, and what Turkey believes their Turksat 5A space mission can achieve.

About Turksat 5A Launch

SpaceX launched the Turkish communication satellite Turksat 5A mission on January 7, 2021. Turksat 5A got launched from Cape Canaveral Space Force Station, situated in Florida. It marks the first SpaceX mission in the year 2021. SpaceX used Falcon 9 as their launch vehicle for the Turksat 5A space mission. During the launch, there was a bit of delay due to several reasons. Firstly, there was a downrange tracking issue, as stated by SpaceX. However, the US Space Force’s 45th Space Wing gave the prediction for favorable conditions up to 70 percent. But the concerns arose when there were thick cumulus clouds and wind shear at the upper atmospheric level that makes it not an ideal condition for the launch.

Falcon 9

Falcon 9 is a two-stage rocket system designed and developed by SpaceX. It is the first orbital-class rocket system in the world. Due to its reusability, Falcon 9 has 103 launches, among which there are 46 re-flown instances. Also, it lets SpaceX use it again and again aggressively for the rocket launch and cut down the operational cost, and use it for more developing other expensive parts. The height and diameter of the SpaceX are 70m and 3.7m, respectively. In the first stage, Falcon 9 integrates nine Merlin engines, along with the aluminum-lithium alloy tanks. These tanks contain liquid oxygen as well as rocket-grade kerosene for the propellant fuel. The second stage has a single-powered Merlin Vacuum Engine with a dedicated task to deliver a payload to the desired orbit.

How SpaceX conducted the launch mission?

During the initial stage of the launch, Falcon 9 went vertical as per the trajectory. Then it started taking a parabolic path to get into the upper layers of the atmosphere. SpaceX has not conducted any static fire test before the flight launch. This move was quite unusual as fire test is by far the most adopted convention. SpaceX usually conducts its nine first-stage engine fires to consolidate and finalize the launch. To skip such a routine test is one of the rarest moments. However, SpaceX is creating this trend since its last mission when it launched US National Reconnaissance’s spy satellite. 

Issues related to Turksat 5A Mission

Turksat Mission, under the flagship of Turkey, faced massive protests from the people of the US. These protests were at its peak during last year, October 2020 when the Armenia Azerbaijan war was going on due to the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. And, because Turkey got involved in it and initiated rapid drone attacks on Armenia, mass came to the streets. The mob that gathered outside SpaceX headquarters at Hawthorne, California, to show their discontent for the satellite launch.

Uses of Turksat 5A Mission

The primary target delivery of the Turksat 5A space mission is towards communication-based applications. Apart from this, the Turkish space agency has laid down the other objectives that they will like to accomplish with this mission are:

  1. Extend drone operations’ range
  2. Anti-jamming capability reinforcement
  3. High-definition live streams of target
  4. Faster instructions’ transmission for munition drops

Hence, it is quite clear that Turkey is going to tap Turksat 5A mainly for defense operations.

Conclusion

SpaceX has added another feather with the successful launch and deployment of the Turksat 5A satellite. SpaceX continued its trend to avoid static fire tests before the launch. Apart from this, the Turksat 5A mission became the 103rd mission conducted by the Falcon 9 launch vehicle. Though there was some delay due to weather-based issues, SpaceX ensured that the delay could not hamper the entire operation. The year 2021 witnessed its first satellite launch in the early days due to SpaceX. There are many more in the pipeline for SpaceX in 2021. Hence, one can estimate the number of exciting space expeditions SpaceX will conduct.

Eva winget is a Microsoft Office expert and has been working in the technical industry since 2006. As a technical expert, Bella has written technical blogs, manuals, white papers, and reviews for many websites.

Source: SpaceX Launches Turksat 5A Mission From Falcon 9

 


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