ISRO hits century; Launches Cartosat 2 series Sat, 30 others

Randal Sanchez
January 12, 2018

In a milestone event in the country's space history, the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) today launched its 100th satellite along-with 30 others in a single mission. The 31 satellites with a combined weight of 1,323 kg have been integrated with the PSLV for deploying them in the earth's lower orbit after liftoff.

"The Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV-C40) deployed India's 710-kg Cartosat and 10-kg nano satellite and 100-kg micro-sat along with 28 foreign satellites into the Earth's orbit after a flawless lift-off from the launch pad", said outgoing Indian Space Research Organisation Chairman A.S. Kiran Kumar at the mission control facility, about 80 km northeast of Chennai.

A Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle is being fueled for liftoff Friday with 31 satellites on the first flight for India's workhorse rocket since an August mishap that left an Indian navigation satellite unusable after reaching orbit. He said, "Many customers have come to ISRO for their launch immediately after our last failure". The last launch of IRNSS-1H - India's first privately built satellite - on August 31 previous year had failed because of a freak accident.

Of the 28 foreign satellites, launched as part of deals made by ISRO's commercial arm Antrix Corporation Limited, three were microsatellites and 25 nanosatellites.

In its first mission this year, the space agency is launching its 100th satellite today.

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# It will be the third satellite in the Cartosat-2 series.

ISRO made nearly Rs 300 crore from foreign satellite launches in 2016-17 and officials have maintained over the past year that smaller satellite launches will play a big role in the future.

This is the space agency's first mission in 2018, and its first since the unsuccessful launch of IRNSS-1H in August past year.

The launch is estimated to take 7 minutes and 15 seconds, and the telecast will be both in Hindi and English. It weighs 710 kg and is used for earth observation.

Soon after the failed mission, there was talk about possible internal sabotage, speculation that an ISRO official brushed away in an interview to a TV channel.

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