Turkey’s biggest aero event kicks off in Istanbul

Turkey’s biggest aero event kicks off in Istanbul

Turkey’s biggest aero event kicks off in Istanbul

TeknofestTurkey’s largest aerospace and technology gathering and the world’s second-biggest aviation event, kicked off on Sept. 21 in Istanbul.

The five-day festival, jointly organized by the Turkish Technology Team Foundation (T3) and the Industry and Technology Ministry, is going to last until Sept. 26 in Istanbul’s Atatürk Airport.

The festival will be open between 9 a.m. and 7 p.m. to all visitors who have proof of either two COVID-19 vaccinations or a negative PCR test.

Allowing young people to showcase their abilities in technological fields, such as rocketry, robotics and aerospace design, the event is expected to host hundreds of thousands of people this year.

Selçuk Bayraktar, the chairman of the event's organizer, Turkish Technology Team Foundation, said new ideas and new inventions that move the world forward come from start-ups and young people.

"Thus, we must enlarge our start-ups much more and support them," he said.

Today, leading global media outlets speak about Turkish start-ups, he underlined.

Bayraktar added that avoiding being condemned to a world constructed by savage capitalist technology monopolies, Turkey must make its own transformation.

Mustafa Varank, Turkish industry and technology minister, said the interest in the event has been increasing year by year.

Touching on Turkey's cutting-edge defense and technology products showcasing in the event, such as helicopter Gökbey and armed unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) Aksungur, the minister noted that Turkey should be a production center of the event critical technologies instead of a consumer.

Mentioning flying cars, he said the size of the flying car market will reach $320 billion until 2030.

Varank said just as the foreign press is talking about Turkey's UAV success, they will write about the country's success in autonomous vehicles, unmanned underwater vehicles and flying cars in the coming years.

The event will include a host of activities, such as air shows with warplanes and helicopters, seminars, summits, tournaments and fairs.

The tech contests will be organized into 34 different categories this year in line with the organization, which also will be live-streamed through related institutional social media channels.

In addition to the usual areas of expertise, the contestants will also compete in swarm simulation, culture and tourism technologies, drone technologies, artificial intelligence, industrial technologies and other areas, while high school students will compete in polar research projects.

Contestants who succeed in ranking high in the competition will be rewarded up to 4 million Turkish Liras ($462,000) in total.