Japanese, Iranian Launches on Tap

H-IIB rocket (Credit: Narita Masahiro)

In addition to Antares and Atlas V launches scheduled on Sunday, Japan and Iran will attempt to orbit satellites over the weekend.

A H-IIA rocket is set to launch the Information Gathering Satellite Optical 7 satellite for the Japanese government on Sunday morning. The launch is scheduled from 0134-0139 GMT (8:34-8:39 p.m. EST on Saturday) from the Tanegashima Space Center.

Iran will attempt to launch the Zafar observation satellite aboard a Simorgh booster from the Imam Khomeini Spaceport. The 113 kg Earth observation satellite will be placed in a 530 km high orbit. Zafar also has a system that will store and forward messages.

The date and time for the launch has not been announced.

Iran’s two orbital launch attempts failed last year. A third booster exploded on the launch pad while undergoing pre-flight preparations.