Indian Space Agency ISRO successfully launched a PSLV-C40 rocket carrying India’s 100th satellite along with 30 others. The Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle or PSLV lifted off from Sriharikota in Andhra Pradesh. This is the 42nd flight of the PSLV.
The 30 other satellites include two other satellites from India and 28 satellites from six countries — Canada, Finland, France, Korea, the United Kingdom and the United States. The total weight of all the 31 satellites carried onboard PSLV-C40 was about 1323 kg.
The mission is a unique one, since the satellites were launched in two orbits. Thirty of the satellites were launched in an orbit 550 km about, and one 359-km above the Earth.
This was done through what scientists call the “multiple burn technology” under which the rocket’s engine is switched off and then switched on to control its height.
The whole process of placing the satellites in two orbits took 2 hours 21 minutes — the longest so far.
The 710-kg earth observation satellite the PSLV is carrying the third in the Cartosat 2 series. The last satellite of the series had been launched successfully in June 2016.
NAViC, a system of seven satellites, powers India’s powerful homegrown Global Positioning System.
ISRO’s workhorse PSLV rocket weighs nearly 320 tonnes and stands up to 44.4 meters, equivalent to a 15-storey building.
The 28 International customer satellites were launched as part of the commercial arrangements between Antrix Corporation Limited (Antrix), a Government of India company under Department of Space (DOS), the commercial arm of ISRO and the International customers.
Cartosat-2 Series Satellite:
Cartosat-2 Series Satellite is the primary satellite carried by PSLV-C40. This remote sensing satellite is similar in configuration to earlier satellites in the series and is intended to augment data services to the users.
The imagery sent by satellite will be useful for cartographic applications, urban and rural applications, coastal land use and regulation, utility management like road network monitoring, water distribution, creation of land use maps, change detection to bring out geographical and manmade features and various other Land Information System (LIS) as well as Geographical Information System (GIS) applications.
Indian Nano Satellite:
Another on-board ISRO satellite is INS-1C (Indian Nano Sattelite), and it’s the third satellite in the Indian Nanosatellite series.
ISRO notes that the first two satellites of this series were carried as co-passenger payloads by PSLV-C37 in February 2017.
INS-1C will be carrying miniature multispectral technology demonstration payload from space applications centre.
Data sent by this camera can be utilised for topographical mapping, vegetation monitoring, aerosol scattering studies and cloud studies.