ISRO’s 20-satellite launch successful

Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle PSLV-C34 was used to carry the satellites, including India’s earth observation spacecraft Cartosat-2, from the second launch pad of the space centre.

The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) on Wednesday launched a record 20 satellites from its Satish Dhawan Space Centre in Andhra Pradesh’s Sriharikota.

The launch of PSLV C-34/Cartosat-2 Series Satellite Mission took place at 9:26 am. Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle PSLV-C34 is being used to carry the satellites, including India’s earth observation spacecraft Cartosat-2, from the second launch pad of the space centre.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi also congratulated the ISRO scientists on their achievement. In a tweet, he said “20 satellites in a go! @isro continues to break new barriers. Hearty congratulations to our scientists on the monumental accomplishment.”

The 48-hour countdown for this launch was started on Monday morning by ISRO. This is the largest-ever number of satellites to be launched into orbit at once by ISRO. Earlier, it had sent 10 satellites into orbit in a single mission in 2008.

The total weight of these satellites, according to ISRO, is about 1,288 kg.

Features of the Cartostat-2 Series satellite:

*Satellite Mass is 727.5 kg
*Orbit type is Circular Polar Sun Synchronous
*Orbit Height is 505 km
*Orbit inclination is 97.48 degrees
*Local time of equator crossing will be 9:30 am
*The design life is 5 years

Thirteen of the satellites are from USA including the 12 Dove satellites from Planet Labs organisation, each of which weighs just 4.7 kg. There are two Canadian satellites and one each from Germany and Indonesia.

List of co-passenger satellites to be launched:

*LAPAN-A3 from Indonesia
*BIROS from Germany
*M3MSat from Canada
*SkySat Gen2-1 from USA
*GHDSat-D from Canada
*12 Dove Satellites from USA
*Two academic/university satellites from India (SATHYABAMASAT and SWAYAM)

ISRO has so far launched 57 satellites of foreign countries on eighteen different PSLV missions. 

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