Iran Tests Homegrown Space Tug

TEHRAN (Tasnim) – Iran test launched a homegrown space tug capable of shifting satellites between orbits and transferring spaceborne cargo from one orbit to another with different energy characteristics.

The ‘Saman’ spacecraft, built by experts from the Iranian Space Research Center (ISRC), was successfully sent into suborbital space by the Iranian Defense Ministry on Tuesday.

“As part of efforts to further expand homegrown telecommunications technology and manufacture a satellite rotating on a geostationary orbit (GEO), the development of the space tug was placed high on the agenda of the ISRC. This means a quicker and smoother process of obtaining the orbital point synchronized with the Earth once a satellite elevates its orbital height from the geostationary orbit to the operational one,” Hassan Salaryieh, acting chief of Iran’s space agency, said.

“The first step, which included the test of the engine of the first stage of the space tug as well as the test of the performance of its rotation generating and de-rotating motors, was successfully completed,” Salariyeh noted.

He further explained that the suborbital payload was sent to a high altitude during the second step so as to test the performance of the cold gas thrusters, the rotation generating and de-rotation engines, the tracking and aiming system, and the payload separation system.

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