Iran has confirmed that it plans to launch a new scientific observation satellite in the "coming days," the head of the country's national space agency said in an interview with AFP.
Morteza Barari on February 1 did not give a specific date for the launch of the Zafar (“Victory” in Persian) satellite, but he said the 113-kilogram satellite will be launched by a Simorgh rocket 530 kilometers above the Earth, and that it will make 15 orbits a day.
His remarks came five days after satellite images suggested that Iran was preparing to launch a satellite into space after three recent failed rocket launches.
Iran’s telecommunications minister tweeted last month that two satellites, which completed their tests were sent to a space facility January 19, to soon start their launch process.
Some Western leaders, including those in the United States, have complained that Iran is using technology involved in the launch of satellites that could also be used to develop ballistic missiles.
Barari told AFP that Iran advocated for the "peaceful use of outer space. All our activities in the domain of outer space are transparent."