The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) successfully launched its satellite SCATSAT-1 for ocean and weather-related studies from Satish Dhawan Space Centre, Sriharikota on Monday. Carrying the 377 kg SCATSAT-1 and seven other satellites, India’s Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle, PSLV-C35, lifted off from ISRO’s first launch pad at 9.12 AM. Lauding ISRO for the historic feat, President Pranab Mukherjee congratulated the organization. Echoing similar sentiments, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that this was a moment of immense joy & pride for India. We take a look at 10 things about the PSLV’s longest-ever flight:
1) PSLV, for the first time, injected eight different satellites, including weather satellite SCATSAT-1, into two different orbits.
2) The SCATSAT-1 will be released first into a 730 km Polar Sun synchronous Orbit (SSO) after about 17 minutes and the rest will be injected into a lower orbit of 689 km after around two hours. The flight is PSLV’s longest ever.
3) ISRO’s SCATSAT-1 can generate accurate data on wind patterns over the ocean surface. It is a continuity mission for the Oceansat-2, which has exhausted its operational life. The expected lifespan of SCATSAT-1 is expected to be five years.
4) There will be two re-ignitions of the launch vehicle for this purpose. The launch team engineers will shut down and restart the fourth and last stage of the vehicle twice during the flight.
5) Besides SCATSAT-1, the others are PRATHAM and PISAT, two academic satellites from India; ALSAT-1B, ALSAT-2B and ALSAT-1N (all from Algeria); and Pathfinder-1 and NLS-19, from the USA and Canada, respectively.
6) This will be the 15th flight of PSLV in ‘XL’ configuration with the use of solid strap-on motors.
7) The five-kg student satellite PISAT carries an imaging camera as payload to capture imagery of 185 km x 135 km area with about 80m/pixel resolution. The satellite is developed by students of PES University, Bengaluru. The other student satellite, PRATHAM, is developed by IIT Bombay.
8) According to ISRO, the total weight of all the eight satellites onboard the PSLV -C35 is around 675 kg
9) The PSLV has so far launched 39 remote-sensing satellites of ISRO, including the Chandrayaan-1 of 2008 and the Mars mission of 2013-14.
10) It has also orbited 74 foreign commercial and university satellites in a global trend where the demand for its category of launch services is increasing.
(With inputs from PTI)