PSLV will put 2 earth ob­ser­va­tion satel­lites from U.K. in space to­day

ISRO’s first fully com­mer­cial trip this year

The Hindu - - FRONT PAGE - Spe­cial Cor­re­spon­dent

A PSLV launch on Sun­day night will put two earth ob­ser­va­tion satel­lites from the U.K. to space.

There is no In­dian satel­lite on this flight. PSLV-C42 will be the first fully com­mer­cial trip of the year, break­ing a five­month-long lull for the In­dian Space Re­search Or­gan­i­sa­tion.

ISRO did not make any launch post-April 12, af­ter it put re­place­ment nav­i­ga­tion satel­lite, IRNSS-1I to space on the PSLV-C41 rocket.

A few days af­ter that, it re­called its GSAT-11 from the South Amer­i­can launch port of Kourou and weeks be­fore it was due for a launch ISRO Chair­man K. Si­van said the in­ter­val was not con­nected with the satel­lite re­call but for the sake of readi­ness of the two cus­tomer satel­lites.

The count­down to the launch be­gan at 1.08 p.m. on Satur­day. The PSLV is be­ing flown in its core-alone for­mat, mi­nus the ex­ter­nal boost­ers. The two satel­lites to­gether weigh nearly 889 kg; this is the op­ti­mum pay­load that a core-alone PSLV can launch, Dr. Si­van said.

PSLV-C42 is sched­uled for launch at 10.08 p.m. from the first launch pad of the Satish Dhawan Space Cen­tre, Sriharikota. It will lift No­vaSAR and S1-4 to a sun-syn­chro­nous ('pole-to-pole') or­bit 583 km from Earth. The en­tire flight up to the re­lease of the satel­lites is de­signed to hap­pen within 17.5 min­utes.

The satel­lites are owned by Sur­rey Satel­lite Tech­nolo­gies Ltd., which signed a com­mer­cial launch con­tract with An­trix Cor­po­ra­tion, an ISRO re­lease said.

PTI/ISRO ■

Space bound: PSLV-C42 get­ting ready to be launched from the Sathish Dhawan Space Cen­tre in Sriharikota.

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