Iran set to launch imaging satellite

TEHRAN (BNS): Iran will launch a satellite withimaging capabilities by the end of this year, IranianTelecommunications Minister Reza Taqipour has said.

“We arepreparing the Rassad 1 (Observation) satellite for launch” by the endof 2010, IRIB quoted Taqipour as saying on Sunday.

Accordingto a Press TV report, Iran needed to carry out further experiments onthe second domestically-made satellite for the exact blast off timebefore March 2011.

Taqipour was also quoted saying that furtheradditional information will be made public after pre-launch tests havebeen carried out and all systems including “the launch base, thecarrier, ground navigation and control of the orbiter gear up for liftoff.”

Iran will use the Rassad 1 satellite to transmit images of the earth and for meteorological purposes, the report said.

In2009, the country launched its first homegrown research satellite.Iranian scientists were on schedule to launch the country's firstmanned mission to space in 2017, President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said.

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