Soheil Salimi


Engineers Without Borders Iran

Once again, “Global Astronomy Month” project gathered all advocates of Astronomy and Peace together around the world to highlight the motto of “Astronomers Without Borders”, One People_One Sky, through the largest global celebration of astronomy.

Engineers Without Borders Iran” has honored to participate in this celebration by organizing variety programs around GAM Program Schedules offered by AWB such as Dark-sky Awareness, Public Outreach, Observing Events, SunDay Workshop, etc. during April 2014.

I’m so grateful to Mr. Mike Simmons, Founder/President of AWB, for inviting me to join Starlight Festival 2014 [1] on May 24 through a video conference at Northwoods Resort, Big Bear Lake, CA. I talked about the “Astronomy Town” of Iran, Sa’adat-shahr; where I’m Executive Director of GAM Project at its astronomical society (Astronomical Society of Pasargad Sky) since 2012. Also I presented some photos of our works in EWB-Iran that you can find further information about it at below.

Starlight Festival
Photo by: Mr. Liam Kennedy
The Control Center Room, Starlight Festival 2014

“Three Special Guests of Our Sky: Saturn, Mars and Jupiter”
[April 22-24, 2014]

Students of Fasa University had this chance to say hello to our three special guests, Saturn, Mars and Jupiter during observing events of GAM2014 at “Observatory and Scientific Center of Fasa Municipality” [current name; while its former name was Shirin Observatory and Science Center of Fasa (SOSCOF)] on April 22-24.

Shirin Observatory and Science Center of Fasa (SOSCOF) [2] was founded by Dr. Ali Talebinejad (BSc, Mechanical Engineering, Sharif University of Technology; MSc & PhD, MIT University) in June 2000 for the promotion of science, technology, and art among the young people in Iran, free of charge. Since then, Dr. Talebinejad has been spending every summer at Shirin Center and has been directing its affairs with the help of about 100 volunteered staff. In addition, he bought the largest possible Meade LX200 telescope which was available for export from the United States at the time, and took it with him in a flight from Boston to Tehran.
In order to broaden the scope of Shirin Center activities, in June of 2001, Dr. Talebinejad brought the necessary equipment such as oscilloscope, frequency meter, laptop computers, multimeter, EPROM programmer, etc. for establishing an electronic and computer lab at the center. He offered the first hands-on lab at the center on the assembly and application of micro controller boards (PIC processor-based).
Furthermore, during summer of 2002, Dr. Talebinejad brought many other equipment to the center such as tens of laptop computers, Global Positioning System, electronic microscope, tens of pocket computers, wireless weather station, technical books, tens of educational softwares, digital camera and so on.

The result of his admirable efforts was the creation of many new and active groups in robotics, X-Ray astronomy, biology, physics, etc., besides Equipment Exhibition and Industrial Exhibition which attracted thousands of visitors.
In 2006, after all these sincere efforts of Dr. Ali Talebinejad who trained about 100 professional staff members of Shirin Center; finally SOSCOF which had about 2000 people in a wide range of science, technology, and art subjects, has been closed by Ahmadinejad’s governors [2005_2013] unfairly. The name of “Shirin Observatory & Science Center of Fasa” turned to “Observatory & Scientific Center of Fasa Municipality”, thereafter. I truly appreciate remarkable, outstanding and valuable endeavors of Dr. Talebinejad for his country, Iran.

At this present, the observatory works under direction of Fasa Municipality. What’s more, approximately 60,000 people have visited this science center since 2000, and have reached some awards and glories as following:

1) Registering the global record of angular separation angle (observing the thinnest new moon) that made the Sky & Telescope magazine write an article about it.
2) Registering the record of angular separation in daylight with both armed and naked eye.
3) Registering the record of farewell to meet.
4) Being selected as the best department of astronomy in 2006
5) Being selected as the best initiation group in Iran in 2005 & 2006
6) Registering the photovoltaic panels for solar tracking devices, solar Laser, and telescope mirror polishing and wiping instrument.
7) Inventing solar desalination
8) Inventing mineweepers robot

Engineers Without Borders Iran is so grateful to Mr. Sajad Saiadi and Mr. Davood Hoseini who shared beauties of sky with students of Fasa University and EWB members. Please click Here to see more photos of GAM2014_EWB Iran.


We Celebrated Our Star, the Sun!

Engineers Without Borders Iran celebrated our star, the Sun on SunDay [3] by organizing an Educational program and a Solar Cooker training workshop at Hafez high school in Fasa [April 27, 2014]. Solar Cooker training workshop, run by "Energy Team" of "Engineers Without Border Iran" included Razieh Amini nezhad (Food Science and Technology student), Niloufar Nekueyan (Mathematics student), Fatemeh Rahimi (Mechanical student), Maryam Alipour (Mechanical student) and me (Civil Engineer). We introduced Solar Thermal Cooking, one of the variety of technologies that convert sunlight to useable energy for cooking. Solar Cookers capture and reflect the sun's heat toward a black pot inside a plastic bag.

Engineer Without Borders Iran SunDay1

At the first, I presented a review of EWB-Iran's activities around Solar Cookers and the importance of the Sun in our life and compared it with other stars in the universe. I started my presentation by asking some astronomical questions. In additionally, I encouraged students to use environmental friendly energy sources instead of chemical sources.

Later, our energy team trained students how to construct their own Solar Cooker by using simple materials [cardboard, foil and glue].

At the same time, students divided to 4 groups and start their team work to make their Solar Cooker and our energy team helped them to cut cardboards and fold them correctly.

They make 2 types of solar cookers, The Suntastic Cooker [4] and Dual- Setting Panel Cooker [5] (DSPL). At the end, when all groups make their Solar Cooker, all of them shows their huge interested in using solar cookers at their home.

Engineer Without Borders Iran SunDay2

RecoFit/Revitalize of “Safe Heavens” along the ancient “Silk Road”!

Amateur astronomers who live in big cities have faced to an unfavorable trouble to observe stars and other celestial bodies due to “Light Pollution” _
a brightening night sky that has obliterated the stars for much of the world’s population_ [6]. Astronomers were among the first to record the negative impacts of wasted lighting on scientific research, but for all of us, the adverse economic and environmental impacts of wasted energy are apparent in everything from the monthly electric bill to climate change. What’s more, we must travel far from home, away from the glow of artificial lighting, to experience the awe-inspiring expanse of the Milky Way as our ancestors once knew it [6]. But this decision may causes many problems which will become it to a dangerous plan. So, we need some safe places to stay, observe and enjoy the sky watching fairly well or start our scientific researches on stars.

Izadkhast Caravanserai
Izadkhast Caravanserai, Fars Province, Iran
Photo by: Amir Abolfath

It’s my great pleasure to say I’m a team member of an international project “The Silk Road to Peace” which is leading by Mr. Jorg Ostrowski [BSc, University of Toronto, MSc, MIT University_Ref. 7] and aims to recofit and revitalize caravanserais along the ancient Silk Road. Most of caravanserais have been located out of cities and near to deserts, in another word, far from Light Pollution. This project has a remarkable potential to make caravanserais to be suitable research/tourist centers for night sky researchers, skygazers and astro-tourists as well. “The Silk Road to Peace” project has the motto of AWB in itself, One People * One Sky, since it’s trying to bring all people together under the night sky to observe the Milky Way through the Silk Road.

“The Silk Road to Peace” Project
[Leader & Team Members]
Tomb of Sa’adi, Shiraz_Iran

Clear skies,
Soheil Salimi
Founder/President of Engineers Without Borders Iran


[1] Starlight Festival 2014:
[2] Shirin Observatory and Science Center of Fasa (SOSCOF):
[3] SunDay:
[4] Suntastic Cooker:
[5] Dual- Setting Panel Cooker:

[6] “PG1: Introduction to Light Pollution
”, International Dark-sky
[7] “The Silk Road to Peace” Project:


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    About Me

    Soheil Salimi was born on July 5, 1992 in Shiraz . From an early age, he has loved the environment and civil engineering. This great passion for engineering has led to an ambition to choose civil engineering as his major in academic studies. He entered Fasa University and achieved many awards during his undergraduate program such as Top Student of the Year Award in Civil Engineering and also ranked himself as the Excellent Student of Civil Engineering, Class of 2014. Soheil started his MSc. in Environmental Engineering at Shiraz University, Iran; and after awarding "Université Paris-Saclay International...


    Location:Shiraz, Fars
    Iran (Islamic Republic of)