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Iran to send animals into space

RIA Novosti

02/12/2008 19:28 TEHRAN, December 2 (RIA Novosti) - Iran plans to send exploratory rockets into space with live animals on board, paving the way for manned space flights, a space research official said on Tuesday.

Mohammad Ebrahimi, deputy head of Iran's Aerospace Research Institute, said Iran plans to send Kavoshgar (Explorer) 3 and 4 rockets into space in the near future.

The Kavoshgar 2 was successfully launched on Wednesday. The rocket consisted of a carrier, space-lab and restoration system.

Ebrahimi said the rocket analyzed air pressure and wind speed, and conducted astronomical tests at altitudes of 50 to 200 km.

The Kavoshgar 2 is a two-stage solid fuel rocket capable of carrying a small payload and reentering the lower atmosphere with a high degree of accuracy. Iran insists that its space program has no military goals.

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