On August 17th 2008, Iran succesfully sent its satellite carrier vehicle Safir-1 (Envoy-1) into low earth orbit, thanks to which remote sensing, satellite telemetry, geometric information system technology, as well as remote and ground station data processing were tested. The event followed test launches of the Kavoshgar (Explorer) satellite carrier earlier this year.
Safir-1 will be used to put into space Omid (Hope), as well as a series of further satellites by 2010. These will fulfill primarily environmental (natural disaster management, geology, etc) and telecommunications functions.
Both Omid satellite and its three-stage Safir-1 launch vehicle are of entirely domestic production, demonstrating the nation’s ongoing and sustained drive towards industrial and technological self-sufficiency, in addition to marking Iran’s entry into a restricted group of just nine countries that master and field satellite launching capability.
The newest effort in Iran’s space program, was warmly welcomed by the public all over the Arab and Muslim world. Former member of the Syrian People’s embly, Mohammad Habash, stresses Iran’s right to autonomous progress and development, achievements that all Muslim societies strive for. Therefore, Muslims feel honored by Iran’s success, whereby the Islamic world can now compete with the USA and Europe in these fields.
Despite the USA-led opposition to Iran’s peaceful nuclear program and the ensuing economic sanctions, the Islamic Republic has managed to pursue its space program and other scientific developments in a steady manner.