Isro gears up for com­mer­cial launch of 2 UK satel­lites

Hindustan Times ST (Mumbai) - - HTNATION - HT Correspondent

NEW DELHI: The Indian Space Re­search Or­gan­i­sa­tion (Isro) on Satur­day be­gan a 33-hour countdown to the launch of two United King­dom (UK) satel­lites from the Satish Dhawan Cen­tre in Sri­harikota.

The satel­lite launch, sched­uled for 10:00pm on Sun­day, will be part of Isro’s com­mer­cial mis­sion un­der the space agency’s An­trix Cor­po­ra­tion Lim­ited. The mis­sion will carry two small earth ob­ser­va­tion satel­lites, No­vasar and S1-4, weigh­ing a to­tal of 889 kg into a 583- km sun­syn­chronous or­bit.

S1-4 is a high-res­o­lu­tion op­ti­cal earth ob­ser­va­tion satel­lite, which will im­prove UK’S dis­as­ter mon­i­tor­ing ca­pa­bil­i­ties. No­vasar car­ries a Syn­thetic Aper­ture Radar that can be used for map­ping the earth sur­face

The satel­lites will be car­ried aboard Isro’s work­horse, the Po­lar Satel­lite Launch­ing Ve­hi­cle (PSLV - C42), which has launched 52 Indian and 237 com­mer­cial in­ter­na­tional satel­lite in the span of 25 years. This mis­sion will use the light­est core-only con­fig­u­ra­tion of PSLV, which does not have the six ad­di­tional solid-strap on mo­tors.

The mis­sion comes af­ter a five-month hia­tus fol­low­ing the launch of the sev­enth satel­lite (IRNSS 1I) in In­dia’s re­gional nav­i­ga­tional satel­lite con­stel­la­tion— NAVIC— in April.

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