Iran is going to send a monkey into space to prepare for the country’s plan to send a man on a similar journey by 2020. After successfully launching its Rassad-1 satellite 162 miles into space this past week, the head of Iran’s Space Organization Hamid Fazeli announced that in July, it will launch the monkey in a Kavoshgar-5 rocket.
The Kavoshgar-5 rocket equipped with a special monkey-carrying capsule is expected to launch this summer sometime between July 23 and August 23. The rocket will travel to an altitude of approximately 74 miles.
In 2010, Iran’s Kavoshgar-3 rocket carried turtles, rats, and worms. But this will be the first monkey to enter space from Iran. Both the United States and Russia have launched live mammals into space in order to test their ability to withstand conditions beyond earth’s protective ozone layer.
Dogs in space
In 1966, Russian launched the bio satellite Kosmos 110 carrying two dogs named Verterok and Ugolek. They were observed in orbit for 22 days and returned to earth alive on March 16, 1966.
Humans were not able to surpass this record until the flight of Skylab 2 in June 1974, according to Space Today.
Many other animals have not been so lucky. In 1958, a beloved stray Husky mix was sent by the Russians into space, where she died. Forty years later, a memorial was built to honor both the dog, named Laika, and other cosmonauts.
Iran’s Rassad-1 satellite will orbit earth 15 times every 24 hours and photograph the planet and transmit images, according to media reports. It was built by Malek Ashtar University in Tehran, which the Iraq Dinar notes is linked to Iran’s elite Revolutionary Guards.
Iran denies charges that its space program has militant intentions.
:: Iraqi Dinar
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image via Owen Booth