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PSLV-C40 places Cartosat-2 Series satellite, 30 co-passenger satellites in orbit

 
ISRO successfully launches Cartosat-2, 30 other satellites
India's workhorse Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle, in its forty second flight (PSLV-C40), today successfully placed in orbit the 710 kg Cartosat-2 Series Satellite for earth observation and 30 co-passenger satellites, which together weighed about 613 kg at lift-off.
 
PSLV-C40 lifted off in text-book conditions at 0929 hours from the First Launch Pad of the Satish Dhawan Space Centre (SDSC) at Sriharikota. The 28-hour countdown for the launch  had begun at 0529 hours yesterday.
 
The co-passenger satellites comprise one microsatellite and one nanosatellite from India as well as three microsatellites and 25 nanosatellites from six countries -- Canada, Finland, France, South Korea, the United Kingdom and the United States of America.
 
The total weight of all the 31 satellites carried onboard PSLV-C40 is about 1323 kg, Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) sources said.
 
The 28 International customer satellites were launched as part of the commercial arrangements between Antrix Corporation Limited (Antrix), the commercial arm of ISRO, and the international customers.
 
The Cartosat-2 Series Satellite, a remote sensing satellite that is similar in configuration to earlier satellites in the series and is intended to augment data services to the users, separated from the launch vehicle after 1040 seconds of flight. All but one of the co-passenger satellites separated one after the other in close succession in the next few minutes.
 
"After a flight lasting 16 minutes 37 seconds, the satellites achieved the polar Sun Synchronous Orbit of  503 km inclined at an angle of 97.55 degree to the equator. In the succeeding seven minutes, Cartosat-2 series satellite, INS-1C and 28 customer
satellites successfully separated from the PSLV in a predetermined
sequence," a press release from ISRO said.
 
One ISRO microsatellite was placed in orbit about an hour later, after the launch vehicle's fourth stage was fired twice for short durations and it was  brought  down to a lower orbit of about 365 km.
 
After separation, the two solar arrays of Cartosat-2 series satellite deployed automatically and ISRO's Telemetry, Tracking and Command Network (ISTRAC) at Bengaluru took over the control of the satellite. 
 
In the coming days, the satellite will be brought to its final operational configuration following which it will begin to provide remote sensing data using its panchromatic (black and white) and multispectral (colour) cameras.
 
The 11 kg INS-1C and and the 100 kg class Microsat, the two Indian co-passenger satellites of Cartosat-2, are also being monitored and controlled from ISTRAC.
 
The imagery sent by the Cartosat-2 satellite will be useful for cartographic applications, urban and rural applications, coastal land use and regulation, utility management like road network monitoring, water distribution, creation of land use maps, change detection to bring out geographical and manmade features and various other Land Information System (LIS) as well as Geographical Information System (GIS) applications, the sources added.
 
Today's successful launch comes less than five months after the failure of the previous mission, PSLV-C39, on August 31, 2017 due to  a heat shield issue. That mission was aimed at placing navigation satellite IRNSS-1H into a Sub-Geosynchronous Transfer Orbit (Sub-GTO).
 
"PSLV-C39 had a normal lift-off at 1900 hrs IST  (7:00 pm) and all the flight events took place exactly as planned, except heat shield separation.  This resulted in satellite separation occurring within the heat shield," a press release from ISRO had said on that day.
 
"The satellite is inside the heat shield resulting in the unsuccessful mission. Detailed analysis is under progress to identify the cause of the anomaly in the heat shield separation event," the release had added.
 
PSLV is India's third generation launch vehicle. After the failed first mission, it had 39 consecutive successful launches between October 1994 and June last year. Today's mission was the 40th successful launch.
 
Its successes include Chandrayaan-1, India's lunar mission in 2008, and Mars Orbiter Spacecraft in 2013. So far, PSLV has successfully launched 51 Indian satellites and 237 customer satellites from abroad.
 
IRNSS-1H was meant to be the eighth satellite of the Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System (IRNSS). 
 
ISRO Chairman A. S. Kiran Kumar said today's mission marked the success of the corrective measures taken following the failure of the previous launch. "It indicates that the problem was understood and rectified," he added.
 
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