(FNA) - Iranian Defense Minister Brigadier General Ahmad Vahidi announced on Sunday that Iran has constructed 10 space test laboratories to strengthen the infrastructures of the country's space industry and help improve the abilities of human resources.
The labs were inaugurated by Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad ahead of the Daheh Fajr (February 1-10) celebrations marking the victory of the 1979 Islamic Revolution.
Planning and setting up the laboratories is in continuation of firm steps taken by Iranian experts in putting domestically-built satellites into orbit, Vahidi said during the inauguration ceremony of the laboratories.
He also noted that Iran is expected to unveil other space projects in the near future.
Iran announced earlier this month that it plans to launch another home-made satellite called Fajr into space by late March 2011.
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad had also earlier announced that the country plans to send a home-made measurement satellite into orbit in the near future.
Ahmadinejad further noted Iran's plans for sending astronauts into space in 2024, and said that the issue has gone under a second study at a recent cabinet meeting and that the cabinet has decided to implement the plan in 2019, five years earlier than the date envisaged in the original plan.
Iran has recently taken wide strides in aerospace. The country sent the first biocapsule of living creatures into space in February, using its home-made Kavoshgar-3 carrier.
Omid was Iran's first research satellite that was designed for gathering information and testing equipment. After orbiting for three months, Omid successfully completed its mission without any problem. It completed more than 700 orbits over seven weeks and reentered the Earth's atmosphere on April 25, 2009.
After launching Omid, Tehran unveiled three new satellites called Tolou, Mesbah-2 and Navid, respectively. Iran has also unveiled its latest achievements in designing and producing satellite carriers very recently.
A new generation of home-made satellites and a new satellite carrier called Simorgh were among the latest achievements unveiled by Iran's aerospace industries.
The milk-bottle shaped rocket is equipped to carry a 60kg satellite 500km into orbit.
The 27-meter tall multi-stage rocket weighs 85 tons and its liquid fuel propulsion system has a thrust of up to 143 tons.
Iran is one of the 24 founding members of the United Nations' Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space (UNCOPUOS), which was set up in 1959.