At the World Space Week in Tehran on October 4, Deputy Head of Iran Space Agency (ISA), Hamid Fazeli, announced that Iran plans to launch three new satellites with indigenously-designed carriers into space in the near future.
“The launching of satellites such as Sharif Sat, Zafar (Triumph), Tolou (Sunrise) and Pars with powerful locally-designed carriers in the near future is on the agenda,” said Hamid Fazeli on Sunday.
Zafar is a monitoring satellite, which will be sent into a geostationary orbit around 36,000 kilometres above Earth’s equator. The satellite will reportedly have a lifespan of 18 months.
Tolou satellite will also carry out remote sensing and topography missions, and will travel in an orbit of 500 kilometres above the equator.
Fazeli also noted that Iran is among the five emerging states active in this sector and that many countries are following Iran’s lead in their space programs. He added that mastering the technology for geosynchronous satellites, localising, designing and launching of telecommunications and remote-sensing satellites, as well as establishing launch pads and telemetry stations, are among other priorities of the ISA.
In July, the ISA formulated a 10-year strategic plan which incorporates three main sections, including sending humans as well as telecommunications and remote sensing satellites into space.
Iran launched its first locally-built satellite, Omid (Hope), in 2009. The country also sent its first bio-capsule containing living creatures – monkeys – into space in February 2010, using Kavoshgar-3 (Explorer-3) carrier.
The country is one of the 24 founding members of the UN Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space, which was set up in 1959.