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Will Iran deploy no Zafar communications satellite by 2021?

In 2019, Iran suffered a trio of failed rocket launches, culminating with an explosion on the launchpad in August. Recent imagery gathered by commercial satellites may indicate that Iran is preparing for another attempt from the Imam Khomeini Space Center in northern Iran.

In addition, Mohammad Javad Azari Jahromi, the Iranian communications minister, recently stated on Twitter that the country is preparing to launch the Zafar-1 and Zafar-2 communications satellites. They are likely going to be launched using either a Safir-1 or Safir-2 rocket. The two rockets have a cumulative four successes and four failures in the last twelve years of use.

Will Iran get neither of the two satellites into space by 1 January 2021??


  • This question will resolve positive if Iran fails to deploy both the Zafar-1 and Zafar-2 satellites into orbit by 1 January 2021. Note that the successful deployment of either Zafar-1 or Zarfar-2 will result in a negative resolution. Failure to launch any missions, regardless of reason, will also be counted as positive resolution of the question. If either of these satellites is successfully deployed, the question resolves negative.

  • A satellite is deployed if it is launched into space and successfully separates from its launch vehicle and any payload adapters, and remains in orbit for at least 24 hours thereafter.

  • Successful operation of either satellite is irrelevant to negative resolution. i.e., If Iran successfully launches either satellite into orbit, but they fail to perform their intended functions, the question will still resolve negative.

  • Resolution will be confirmed by credible international media report and not solely the announcement of the government of Iran.

  • This question will be retroactively closed twenty-four hours prior to the first attempted launch of a Zafar satellite.


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