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The Indian Space Research Organisation (Isro) on Monday launched the EMISAT satellite along with 28 other satellites from other nations, including 24 from the US from the Sriharikota launch station at 9:27 am.
Isro’s PSLV C45 lifted off from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre carrying India’s EMISAT and 28 satellites from global customers, including the US.
The mission would witness Isro placing payloads in three orbits and conducting space experiments for the first time.
The EMISAT satellite is an intelligence satellite. According to Isro’s statement, the EMISAT is aimed at electromagnetic measurement.
This comes days after DRDO’s successful testing of an anti-satellite missile with Mission Shaktithat boosts India’s national security.
Isro’s third generation workhorse Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) was used in the launch. This was PSLV’s 47th flight, Isro said.
#WATCH Sriharikota: ISRO’s #PSLVC45 lifts off from Satish Dhawan Space Centre, carrying EMISAT & 28 customer satellites on board. #AndhraPradesh
1,8939:36 AM – Apr 1, 2019
The four-stage PSLV-C45 blasted off from the second launch pad at the spaceport of Sriharikota, at 9.27 am Monday.
The mission marks several firsts to the credit of the space agency as it would manoeuvre satellites in various orbits and orbital experiments including on maritime satellite applications.
The other 28 international satellites — 25 3U type, two 6U type and one 2U type nano satellites — are from Lithuania (two), Spain (1), Switzerland (1) and the United States (24).
All these satellites are being launched under commercial arrangements, ISRO said.
According to Isro, a new variant of the rocket PSLV-QL equipped with four Strap-On motors in the first stage was used for the launch.
PSLV, also used in India’s two key missions — “Chandrayan” in 2008 and Mars Orbiter in 2013, is a reliable and versatile launch vehicle for Isro with 39 consecutive successful flights till June, 2017 and five-in-a row from January 2018.
The rocket has encountered only two failures so far — its maiden developmental flight ended unsuccessful way back in 1993. In September, 2017 the flight went off without any hitch but the IRNSS-1H Satellite could not be released into orbit after the PSLV-C39’s heat shield failed to open on reaching the orbit.
In Monday’s mission, Isro scientists would place the satellites and payloads in three different orbits, a first for the agency.
During this initiative, all the other 28 customer satellites, totally weighing about 220 kgs, were also released by lowering the fourth state to around 504 kms orbit.
Again, the fourth stage would be reignited and further lowered to 485 kms orbit to serve as an orbital platform for carrying out space borne experimentations for the first time in ISRO’s history.
According to ISRO, this is the first time it has been envisaged to provide a micro-gravity environment for research organisations and academic institutes to perform experiments.
The PS4-fourth stage hosts three payloads in this mission.
They are automatic identification system from ISRO for Maritime satellite applications capturing messages transmitted from ships.
Automatic Packet Repeating System from AMSAT (Radio Amateur Satellite Corporation), India will assist amateur radio operators in tracking and monitoring position data.
Advanced Retarding Potential Analyzer for lonospheric Studies (ARIS) from Indian Institute of Space Science and Technology (IIST) for the structural and composition studies of ionosphere.
The previous launches by ISRO this year include the imaging satellite Microsat-R for military purpose along with 1.2 kg Kalamsat in January onboard PSLV-C44.
In February, Isro launched India’s communication satellite GSAT-31 from the European launch service provider Ariane from French Guiana.