Turkey-US to build satellites for Mideast market

Turkey’s top aerospace company and the Sierra Nevada Corporation, or SNC, a United States’ satellite company owned by a Turkish American, have agreed to cooperate to jointly make satellites for Middle Eastern companies, officials from both firms told the Hürriyet Daily News on Wednesday.

“I think we can do lots of business in this area,” said Muharrem Dörtkaşlı, general manager of Turkish Aerospace Industries, or TAI. “Sierra Nevada has all the qualities we seek.”

“We selected a Gulf country to focus our efforts toward to make satellites for Middle Eastern countries,” Fatih Özmen, president and chief executive of SNC, on the sidelines of the International Defense Industry Fair, or IDEF, 2011, Turkey’s most major defense fair held bi-annually.

“We believe we will benefit a lot in the region if we collaborate and work together,” Özmen said.

SNC is an electronic systems provider and systems integrator specializing in micro-satellites, energy, telemedicine, nanotechnology and commercial orbital transportation services. The company contracts with the U.S. military, NASA and private space flight companies. The company is headquartered in Sparks, Nevada.  TAI in recent years bolstered its satellite and space-related works, as the second-largest Turkish defense company.

TAI also takes part in the construction of Turkey’s first military satellite, the Gökturk, a program led by Italy’s Telespazio.

Istanbul – HDN