Iran Says It Sets Up Space Tracking Center to Monitor Objects Passing in Orbit

Defense Minister Gen. Ahmad Vahidi said the center was for Iran's space-related security but that Tehran would also share the acquired data with other countries, the official IRNA news agency reported

Iran said Sunday that it set up its first space tracking center to monitor objects passing in orbit overhead.

Defense Minister Gen. Ahmad Vahidi said the center was for Iran's space-related security but that Tehran would also share the acquired data with other countries, the official IRNA news agency reported. The report said President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was present at the inauguration of the center located near the town of Delijan, some 200 kilometers (125 miles) south of Tehran.

Iran frequently announces technological breakthroughs that cannot be independently verified. It has long pursued space ambitions aimed at putting its own satellite into orbit as well as a manned space flight.

"The base is aimed at securing the country's space facilities and monitoring space objects especially satellites that pass overhead," Vahidi was quoted as saying.
The country has nine command and control ground stations for its space program including one in Syria, the country's main Arab regional ally. The rest are located mainly in the central and southern parts of the country.

Vahidi said the Delijan center used radar, electro-optic and radio tracking.
Iran says it wants to put its own satellites into orbit to monitor natural disasters in the earthquake-prone nation, improve telecommunications and expand military surveillance in the region. The U.S. and its allies worry that the same technology could also be used to develop long-range missiles.

In one of its most recent high-profile space announcements, Iran said in February that it sent a monkey into space.

Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, second left, listening to his Defense Minister, Gen. Ahmad Vahidi, as a rocket is paraded during army parade ceremony marking National Army Day outside Tehran, April 18, 2012. Credit: AP

Click the alert icon to follow topics:

Comments

SUBSCRIBERS JOIN THE CONVERSATION FASTER

Automatic approval of subscriber comments.

Subscribe today and save 40%

Already signed up? LOG IN

ICYMI

Election ad featuring Yair Lapid in Rahat, the largest Arab city in Israel's Negev region.

This Bedouin City Could Decide Who Is Israel's Next Prime Minister

Dr. Claris Harbon in the neighborhood where she grew up in Ashdod.

A Women's Rights Lawyer Felt She Didn't Belong in Israel. So She Moved to Morocco

Mohammed 'Moha' Alshawamreh.

'It Was Real Shock to Move From a Little Muslim Village, to a Big Open World'

From the cover of 'Shmutz.'

'There Are Similarities Between the Hasidic Community and Pornography’

A scene from Netflix's "RRR."

‘RRR’: If Cocaine Were a Movie, It Would Look Like This

Prime Minister Yair Lapid.

Yair Lapid's Journey: From Late-night Host to Israel's Prime Minister