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Iran Prepares Next Satellite Launch

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The Iranian Space Agency (ISA) is preparing the launch of another satellite into orbit, the Zafar 2, which is described by Tehran Times as being capable of “taking color photos and [surveying] oil reserves, mines, forests, and natural lands.”

Zafar 2 has been developed entirely within Iran by the Iranian University of Science and Industry.

Zafar 2’s predecessor failed to reach orbit, but Iran has previously, successfully launched satellites to orbit including Omid in 2009, Rasad in 2011 and Navid in 2012.

Iran’s current satellite launch vehicles consist of the Safir and Safir-2 rockets, the latter of which is also referred to as Simorgh.

These are considered as small-lift orbital launch vehicles or small launch vehicles (SLVs) comparable to Rocket Lab’s Electron, Moscow Institute of Thermal Technology’s Start-1, Orbital Sciences Corporation’s Minotaur I, China’s Long March 6 and Long March 11 as well as Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency’s (JAXA) Epsilon and the European Space Agency’s (ESA) Vega.

Why this is Important

Iran now belongs to an exclusive club of nations capable of building and launching vehicles and payloads into orbit. This small club includes Russia, the US, France, Japan, the UK, India, Israel, Ukraine, and North Korea. Many of these nations have previously developed the ability to send payloads into space but are not currently continuing to do so, meaning Iran belongs to a much more exclusive........

© New Eastern Outlook

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