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State-run television in Teheran said the rocket was the first fired by Iran "into space," but analysts said it looked exactly like a standard Iranian Shihab 3 ballistic missile, which was incapable of taking more than 30 kilograms into space. Satellites usually weight hundreds of kilograms.
Inbar also cast doubt on Ahmadinejad's claim that Iran had succeeded in developing its first domestically built satellite, called Omid, or Hope. Iran currently has one satellite in space called Sina, launched in 2005 by Russia. Inbar said Sina was not advanced and had only low-resolution image capabilities.
State TV said Omid took 10 years to build, and the official news agency IRNA reported that it would be sent into orbit sometime in roughly the next 12 months. "The research rocket is part of preparations for the launch of a satellite into orbit," said IRNA.
Defense analyst Andrew Brookes of the International Institute for Strategic Studies in London agreed that Iran was advancing but he said the test was nothing remarkable as the country had already developed ballistic missiles.
"We know Iran can fire missiles. This proves nothing new in terms of technology...
Originally posted by V Kaminski
...I recommend an early weekend skiing in the montains with sunblock and sun-glasses.