Cats in outer space sound cute in a make believe and semi-fashionable way (see these leggings and this t-shirt), but Iran wants to actually put a cat in space – and that sounds more like sci-fi horror.
So far, Iran has sent a monkey, worms, a turtle, and a mouse into space. Next up: a Persian cat. The use of animals is supposed to bring them closer to launching a human into space, hopefully by 2018.
Senior space program official, Mohammad Ebrahimi, said the space capsule containing the feline (and/or possibly a mouse or rabbit, as that is also under consideration) is planned to be launched by the end of Iran’s current year, which ends March 21st. The launch is said to reach 120-kilometers/72 miles. The launch will be in a liquid-filled rocket (solid-fueled boosters have been used in the past).
Earlier this year, Iran sent a gray rhesus macaque to space. Kenneth Halberg, a researcher at the University of Copenhagen, commented that the demonstration was “more of a show,” adding, “There’s nothing new about sending a monkey to space.”
It just seems like there should be a better way to prepare for space exploration nowadays without the use of animals.
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