Iran has apparently failed for the second time this year to launch a satellite into space, according to images depicting an empty launch pad with a burn mark on it at an Iranian space center.
The images were taken by the Colorado-based company DigitalGlobe. On Tuesday, the company released images of a rocket ready to launch at the Imam Khomeini Space Center. By Wednesday, the rocket was gone and what appears to be a burn mark was left in its place.
SCOOPLET: Iran's second space launch attempt in less than a month is an apparent failure, according to @DaveSchmerler @ArmsControlWonk based on imagery from @planetlabs:https://t.co/J9AjGV0HsP pic.twitter.com/D5DuUTCQZT
— Geoff Brumfiel (@gbrumfiel) February 6, 2019
Iranian state media and government officials have not mentioned the alleged failure.
In January, Iran attempted to launch a satellite into space but failed when the vessel could not reach the required velocity. At the time, Authorities openly confirmed that the launch was unsuccessful.
Iran usually displays space achievements in February during the anniversary of its 1979 Islamic Revolution, when radical Islamists overthrew the country's monarch. This month will mark the 40th anniversary of the revolution.
The United States and Israel are concerned by Iran's missile capabilities. The US argues that Iran's attempted satellite launches violate a UN Security Council resolution warning Iran not to create ballistic missiles capable to delivering nuclear weapons.
On Sunday, Iranian state media reported that its most advanced missiles, which can reach Israel and US bases in the Gulf, have been equipped with new precision-guided warheads.
According to the report in the Fars news agency, the warheads have been attached to the Khoramshahr, a missile with a range of 1,250 miles.
"The new generation of missiles with guided warheads has been named Khoramshahr 2 and they can be controlled until hitting the target and are able to carry warheads weighing nearly 2 tons," the report said.
President Donald Trump said during his State of the Union address Tuesday evening that his administration will fight Iranian activity.
"My administration has acted decisively to confront the world's leading state sponsor of terror: the radical regime in Iran," Trump said.
"They do bad, bad things. To ensure this corrupt dictatorship never acquires nuclear weapons, I withdrew the United States from the disastrous Iran nuclear deal," he said, referring to the 2015 sanctions-relief-for-nuclear-rollback agreement negotiated under US President Barack Obama. "And last fall, we put in place the toughest sanctions ever imposed by us on a country.”