Iran has begun developing the Sarir launch vehicle, which will allow launching satellites into geostationary orbit, the head of the Iranian Space Agency, Hassan Salari, said.
Last week, Iranian Minister of Information and Communications Technology Isa Zarepour announced that the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC, an elite unit of the Iranian armed forces) successfully launched the third military satellite, Nur-3, into Earth orbit. Later it became known that Iran plans to launch two more satellites into orbit by the end of March 2024.
“In the field of launch vehicles, we have begun the first step to reach an altitude of 36 thousand kilometers (geostationary orbit). The Ministry of Defense has signed a contract to create an experimental model of the Sarir launch vehicle for suborbital and orbital flights, and the process of its construction has begun,” – Salari said.
In 2020, the IRGC Aerospace Forces launched the first military satellite, Nur-1, into an orbit of 425 kilometers; two years later, in March 2022, the second satellite, Nur-2, was launched into an orbit of 450 kilometers. The Iranian Tasnim agency notes that all three launches were carried out using a Qased launch vehicle, also designed and produced by specialists of the IRGC Aerospace Forces.