ISRO launches Cartosat-2 along with 30 nano-satellites from Sriharikota
Out of the 30 co-passenger nano-satellites, 29 belong to foreign customers from 14 countries. The lone domestic nano-satellite from an educational institution in Kanyakumari district.
The National space agency, Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), on 23 June 2017 successfully launched India’s ‘Cartosat-2 Series’ satellite and 30 other co-passenger payloads. The satellite and its co-passengers were launched by its highly reliable polar satellite launch vehicle PSLV C-38 from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre, Sriharikota at 9.29 am.
This was the 40th flight for PSLV, the satellite launch vehicle and the 17th flight of PSLV in XL configuration with the use of solid strap-on motors.
The PSLV C38 rocket carrying India’s Cartost-2 Series satellite along with its co-passenger was launched after a 28-hour countdown that started at 5.29 hours on 22 June 2017. To give enough thrust to carry them to a 505 km sun-synchronous orbit, the rocket was armed with solid strap-on motors.
The 30 nano-satellites include 29 belonging to foreign customers from 14 countries and one domestic payload of a private educational institution from Kanyakumari district.
The principal payload Cartosat-2 Series weighs 712 kg, whereas all the 30 nano-satellites together weigh 243 kg, taking the total weight to 955 kg. The international payloads were launched as part of the commercial arrangements made between Antrix Corporation Limited (Antrix), the commercial arm of ISRO and international customers.
This was the second launch mission for the ISRO in June 2017, coming close on the heels of the recent successful test-flight of the 4-ton class launch vehicle GSLV Mark-III.
The launch mission is set to be completed in over 23 minutes since lift off, with Cartosat-2 Series satellite being the first to separate from it, followed by the customer satellites one by one. The Cartosat-2 Series is a remote sensing satellite, containing sophisticated high-resolution cameras with a mission life of five years. This satellite was launched with an objective of providing high-resolution scene-specific spot imagery.
The data of Cartosat-2 Series satellites will provide vital inputs for the urban and rural planning, coastal land use regulation, road network monitoring and geographical information system applications.