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Russia launches an Iranian satellite and cubesats from Baikonur tomorrow

Rumors indicate that 'Khayyam' would spy on certain zones

A Soyuz-2.1b rocket is installed at Launch Complex 6 at Area 31 of the Baikonur cosmodrome with Iran's Khayyam remote sensing spacecraft and sixteen small "rideshare" satellites. The launch of the rocket with the Islamic Republic of Iran spacecraft and a group of 38 satellites from eighteen countries is scheduled for August 9, 2022 at 11:52:38 am Nur-Sultan time (05:52:38 UTC, or 01:38 am EDT). "The Soyuz-2.1b rocket with the Khayyam spacecraft was transferred this morning at 07:30 local time by rail from Assembly and Test Building 40 (MIK 40) and installed on the No. the cosmodrome media last Friday. The satellites must be placed in a 500 km circular sun-synchronous orbit, inclined at 97 degrees to the equator.

The pre-launch work is being carried out as per the contract of the company Glavkosmos and carried out jointly by representatives of Roskosmos customers and subsidiaries – the rocket factory RKTs Progress, NPO Lavochkin, builder of the Fregat stage and the ground infrastructure center TsENKI.

According to the press office of the administration of the locality of Inta of the Komi Republic in the Russian Federation, in connection with the launch of the rocket, it is possible for the parts of the launch vehicle to fall, as well as the occurrence of natural fires in the territories of Pechora, Inta, Usinsk and Vorkuta.

Photo source: KazTAG correspondent

Rumors of Iranian Satellite Use in Ukraine Conflict

However, there is suspicion in the Western media that the Iranians may not be able to take control of the satellite immediately. Russia, which has been investing to achieve its military targets during its five-month invasion of Ukraine, reportedly told Tehran it planned to use the satellite for a few months or more to beef up surveillance of military installations in the conflict, two Russian officials said under anonymity due to the secrecy involved in intelligence gathering. The Russian Embassy in Washington declined to comment. The Biden administration is closely following Iran's satellite research, which is developing an increasingly powerful missile fleet. Government officials declined to comment on the launch or Moscow's intentions to use the satellite to monitor battlefields in Ukraine.

But last week, the Iranian Space Agency said no country would use its satellite imagery for military purposes, according to Iranian state agency IRNA. Before that, the American newspaper The Washington Post claimed that Russian authorities were preparing to launch a satellite by order of the state, but will use it for several months to monitor military targets in Ukraine. The Iranian agency noted that these reports are not true. “The sending of commands and the receipt of information from this satellite will be carried out entirely with an encrypted algorithm already embedded in it by the researchers of the space organization, and in this process no other country will be able to acces