IRAN: TROUBLED SPACE MISSION

Posted by Beverley Smith on

 

Some time back, Iran announced that it will be launching at least two satellites into space. However, on Tuesday, January 15, 2019, Iran launched one of the satellites that it plans to launch despite criticism from the United States earlier this month. But Iran has recently announced that the satellite was unable to reach orbit.

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It was revealed that the reason why the satellite was unable to reach orbit was because of the fact that the spacecraft was not able to attain enough speed in the third stage and was not put into orbit. This information was revealed by Iran’s Minister of Communication, Mohammed Javad Azari Jahromi to the official IRNA news agency after a ceremony was held for the launch at Imam Khomeini Spaceport on Tuesday. It was also announced that the country is planning to launch another satellite into orbit soon.

The Minister of Communications in Iran revealed that the rocket has successfully passed its first and second stage before encountering problems in the third stage. No more information was revealed on the cause of the rocket failure, but he announced that the Iranian scientists would continue their work.

Also, the Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu also condemned Iran over the failed satellite launch, accusing the Nation of lying and alleging that the “innocent satellite” was really the “first phase of an intercontinental missile” that the nation is developing in violation of the international agreements.

Iran has announced that it plans to launch two satellites, Payam (meaning message) and Doosti (meaning friendship) into orbit. It was not revealed whether the failure of the launch of the Payam satellite will have any effect on the launch schedule of the Doosti satellite. However, the Iranian Minister of communication revealed in a tweet that “Doosti is waiting for orbit” without further explanation.

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Earlier this month, the United States Secretary of State issued a warning to the country to scrap its planned satellite launch and threatened to increase sanctions on the country. On Tuesday, he issued a statement condemning the planned satellite launch but did not reveal if the United States plans to impose new sanctions on the country in response.

The United States Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said in a statement that "We have been clear that we will not stand for Iran's flagrant disregard for international norms. The United States is working with our allies and partners to counter the entire range of the Islamic Republic's threats, including its missile program, which threatens Europe and the Middle East,”

The Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo has argued that Iran’s space satellite launch will be violating a United Nations Security Council resolution that was passed in the support of the nuclear deal in 2015. He also said that this satellite launch will “incorporate technology that is virtually identical to that used in ballistic missiles, including intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs)”. He said that the satellite launch will further Iran’s ability to eventually build such a weapon.

The Iran Space program has however announced that the satellite to be launched does not incorporate ICBMs and Iran has revealed that the satellites are mainly for telecommunications.

 

REFERENCES

CNN

Space Flight Now

 


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