Following Iran’s repeated failures to get a satellite into orbit, Russia's Roscosmos says it will launch one on behalf of the Islamic Republic into space.
Roscosmos said on Wednesday that the spacecraft, a remote sensing satellite called "Khayyam" after Persian polymath Omar Khayyam (1048 – 1131), will be sent into orbit by a Soyuz rocket.
"We plan to launch a Soyuz-2.1b rocket, equipped with a Fregat upper stage, from the Baikonur Cosmodrome [a spaceport in southern Kazakhstan leased to Russia] on August 9, 2022; it will take the Khayyam remote earth probing spacecraft into the orbit under an order of the Islamic Republic of Iran," the company said, highlighting that the spacecraft was designed and produced by Roscosmos enterprises.
It added that the rocket will also carry 16 smaller spacecrafts, designed in various colleges, commercial companies and non-profit organizations.
"Russian spacecraft are designed for scientific and technological research, including development of inter-satellite communications channels, measurement of electromagnetic radiation, remote earth probing and monitoring of ecological situation," Roscosmos claimed.
In July, Iran International reported that Iran’s satellite carrier rocket Zoljanah exploded after launch despite Tehran’s claim of its recent successful test-launch. The hybrid-propellant satellite launcher that was tested for the second time on June 26 did not even manage to cover half of its intended path to orbit, western sources said.
The three-stage Zoljanah (Zuljanah) satellite launch vehicle, which has two solid propulsion phases and a single liquid propulsion phase, was test-fired at a desert launch pad at Imam Khomeini Space Center southeast of Semnan, the site of frequent recent failed attempts.