Safir (rocket)


Iran rocket irilv.jpg
Prior to the 2 February 2009 launch with Omid on board
FunctionLEO launch vehicle
ManufacturerIranian Space Agency
Country of originIran
Height22 m (72ft)
Diameter1.25 m (4.10ft)
Mass26,000 kg
Payload to LEO
Mass65 kilograms (143 lb)[1]
Associated rockets
Launch history
Launch sitesIran Space Center
Total launches8 (attempted)
Failure(s)1 (3 unknown)
First flight17 August 2008
Last flight5 February 2019

The Safir (Persian: سفیر‎, meaning "ambassador") is the first Iranian expendable launch vehicle able to place a satellite in orbit.[2] The first successful orbital launch using the Safir launch system took place on 2 February 2009 when a Safir carrier rocket placed the Omid satellite into an orbit with a 245.2 km (152.4 mi) apogee.[3][4]

The Simorgh is a larger launcher based on Safir technology, and sometimes called the Safir-2.[5]


A sub-orbital test flight, named Kavoshgar-1 (Persian: کاوشگر ۱‎, "Explorer-1"), was conducted on 4 February 2008, as announced by state-run television. A launch on 25 February 2007 may also have been of the same type. The first flights carried instruments to measure the higher atmosphere. The rocket launched on 4 February 2008 was a liquid-propellant-driven rocket, probably a derivative of the Shahab-3, that reached an altitude of 200–250 km in space, and successfully returned science data according to the Iranian News Agency.[citation needed]

On 19 February 2008, Iran offered new information about the rocket and announced that Kavoshgar-1 used a two staged rocket.[6] The first stage separated after 100 seconds and returned to earth with the help of a parachute. The second stage continued its ascent to an altitude of 200 kilometres. However it was not intended to reach orbital velocity.[citation needed]

Earlier reports by the Iranian News Agency suggested that Kavoshgar-1 used a three staged rocket with the first stage separating after 90 seconds and the rocket reaching an orbit between 200 and 250 kilometres.[7][8]

The successful development and launch of a sounding-space-rocket was already announced a year earlier, on 25 February 2007. It is unknown if the sounding rocket launched on 25 February 2007 and the rocket launched on 4 February 2008 are of the same type.[citation needed]

Launch history

Damaged launch pad at Imam Khomeini Spaceport after rocket explosion of 29 August 2019.

Safir has made seven launches so far, putting 4 satellites into orbit.

Flight No. Date & Time (UTC) Payload Type Outcome Remarks
1 17 August 2008 Unknown; may be boilerplate Safir-1 Un­known US defense officials claimed the vehicle failed after first-stage powered flight; Iranian officials claimed that the launch was a suborbital test carrying a boilerplate satellite.[9][10]
2 2 February 2009 Omid Safir-1 Success First successful orbital launch of Safir making Iran the ninth country to develop an indigenous satellite launch capability.[11]
3 15 June 2011 Rasad Safir-1A Success Rasad-1 was launched on the maiden flight of the Safir-1B with increased thrust.
4 3 February 2012 Navid Safir-1B Success New configuration of the Safir carrier rocket, featuring a larger second stage with 20% more thrust.
5 Between 18 May and 21 June 2012 Unknown Safir-1B+ Failure Satellite imagery shows a blast scar on launch pad, suggesting that there has been a launch. No officials have confirmed a launch. It may have been either an engine test or rocket failure at high altitude.[5]
6 2 February 2015 Fajr Safir-1B+ Success First Iranian satellite with orbital maneuverability using cold-gas thrusters.
7 5 February 2019 Doosti (Friendship) Safir-1B+ Failure The Deputy Minister of Defense in Iran claimed a successful launch.[12] Research associates at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies claimed the launch failed at some point after liftoff.[13]
8 29 August 2019 Nahid 1 Safir-1B+ Failure Launch preparation accident.[14][15]

See also


  1. ^
  2. ^ Parisa Hafezi (2008-08-17). "Iran launches first home-made satellite into space". Reuters. Retrieved 2008-08-17.
  3. ^ "OMID Spacecraft - Trajectory Details". NASA NSSDC.
  4. ^ "The Threat". US Missile Defense Agency. Archived from the original on 2009-11-05.
  5. ^ a b Clark, Stephen (11 February 2019). "Second Iranian satellite launch attempt in a month fails". Spaceflight Now. Retrieved 12 February 2019.
  6. ^ "Iran provides space launch info". Press TV. 2008. Archived from the original on 2008-09-30. Retrieved 2009-01-11.
  7. ^ Ali Akbar Dareini (2008). "Iran to Launch 2 More Research Rockets Before Placing Satellite into Orbit This Summer". Archived from the original on 2009-02-08. Retrieved 2009-01-11.
  8. ^ "Iran's Research Rocket Beams Back Science Data". Associated Press. 2008. Retrieved 2009-01-11.
  9. ^ "Iran launches satellite carrier". BBC News. 2008-08-17. Retrieved 2008-08-17.
  10. ^ "Safir Data Sheet". Space Launch Report. 6 February 2018. Retrieved 19 March 2018.
  11. ^ McDowell, Jonathan. "Issue 606". Jonathan's Space Report. Retrieved 2009-02-03.
  12. ^ "Иран запустил второй за месяц спутник собственного производства". РИА Новости (in Russian). 2019-02-07. Retrieved 2019-02-07.
  13. ^ Brumfiel, Geoff (2019-02-06). "Satellite Imagery Suggests 2nd Iranian Space Launch Has Failed". Retrieved 2019-02-07.
  14. ^ Iranian Rocket Launch Ends In Failure, Imagery Shows
  15. ^ Iran rocket launch failure satellite photo

External links

  • Iran's Research Rocket Beams Back Science Data,
  • Iran Launches Rocket, Unveils Space Center,
  • Iran's Sputnik,
  • Iran rocket claim raises tension, BBC
  • Iran: Rocket Launch Another Show Of Prowess, RadioFreeEurope RadioLiberty
  • Iran claims space rocket launch, AlJazeera
  • Iranians inaugurate space project, BBC
  • Iran to Launch 2 More Research Rockets Before Placing Satellite into Orbit This Summer, on
  • Iran Launches Indigenous Carrier Rocket