Tuesday, February 14, 2017

All Eyes on ISRO’s Record Attempt to Send 104 Satellites in One Mission

ISRO has becomes a major competitor to US space launching companies due to its cost effectiveness. February 15 record mission will make ISRO Launchpad further attractive as costs will come down to approximately a third of what a SpaceX launch costs.

Millions of Indians are anxiously waiting for Wednesday morning when Indian Space Research Organization is scheduled to launch record 104 satellites on board a single rocket from the spaceport of Sriharikota.
Mission will get recorded in history if all goes according to the plan. India's Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle, in its thirty ninth flight (PSLV-C37), will first launch the 714 kg Cartosat-2 series satellite for earth observation and 103 co-passenger satellites together weighing about 664 kg at lift-off into a 505 km polar Sun Synchronous Orbit.

Indian scientists have used the similar variant rocket that was used in the ambitious Mars Orbiter Mission.

Out of 101 nano satellites, 96 belong to US and one each from Israel, Kazakhstan, Netherlands, Switzerland, and UAE. Mission will also include record number of nano-satellites from California based Planet Labs which uses intermediaries routes to bypass a policy which prevents US satellites from being launched from ISRO's launch vehicles.

Success of February 15 launch will further enhance the chances of attracting business from US companies as launch costs will go down further from which is a third of what a SpaceX launch costs.

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