ISRO Launches 104 Satellites on Single Vehicle
Agency betters Russian counterpart’s feat of launching 37 satellites at one go
Sriharikota: Scripting history, India on Wednesday successfully launched a record 104 satellites — all but three of them foreign — from here and put them into orbit in a single mission onboard its most dependable Polar rocket.
Recording its 38th consecutive success, ISRO’s workhorse Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) injected India’s weather observation Cartosat-2 Series satellite and 103 nano satellites into precise orbit in a gap of 30 minutes after a textbook lift-off from this spaceport, about 100 km from Chennai. The Indian Space Research Organisation(ISRO) bettered Russian space agency’s feat of launching 37 satellites at one go in 2014. The previous highest number of satellites launched by ISRO (Indian Space Research Organisation) in one mission was 20 in June 2015.
A majority of the satellites have earth-imaging capability while the Indian cartographic satellite is capable of taking high resolution images.
Celebrations erupted among scientists at the spaceport here when the ISRO chairman AS Kirankumar announced that all the satellites had been put into orbit as planned.
“All 104 satellites successfully placed in orbit. My hearty congratulations to the entire ISRO team for the wonderful job they have done,” a beaming ISRO chairman AS Kirankumar said. PM Narendra Modi congratulated ISRO for the successful launch of 104 satellites, calling it a “remarkable feat”.
Cartosat-2 Series satellite, a remote sensing spacecraft with a five-year life span, would send images that would be utilised in coastal land use and regulation, road network monitoring, distribution of water, creation of land use maps among others, ISRO said. After a flawless flight, the rocket first put into orbit 714 kg Cartosat-2 Series satellite followed by the co- passengers --ISRO's INS-1A and INS-1B, 96 other nano satellites belonging to two US companies, and one each from Israel, Kazakhstan, The Netherlands, Switzerland and the UAE. Each nano satellite weighs less than 10 kg.
The satellites were placed in the polar Sun Synchronous Orbit (SSO) in a gap of about 30 minutes during a series of separations. The mission once again proved ISRO's capabilitiesin undertaking commercial launches with the PSLV achieving its 38th consecutive success.So far, ISRO has launched 226 satellites, including 179 belonging to foreign countries.
The PSLV with 104 satellites on board being launched