Sriharikota, February 14: All eyes are set on the launch of Indian Space Research Organization ISRO’s 104 satellites in one go which is going to take place on Wednesday i.e tomorrow. The day which will carve itself in the history of space science which will witness the launching of 104 satellites in one go along with 101 foreign satellites into its orbit on its PSLV-C37 rocket.
ISRO got the go-ahead on Monday for its attempt to launch a record set of 104 satellites on a single rocket on Monday. Its mission readiness review committee (MRRC) as well as the launch authorization board gave the green signal for launch of the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) that will carry the satellites.The launch will take place from Satish Dhawan Space Centre in Sriharikota in Andhra Pradesh. The MRRC, Chairman K. Narayana and LAB led by Shar director P. Kunhi Krishnan, decided to commence the countdown at 5.28am on Tuesday, and launch the rocket at 9.28am on Wednesday.
How the satellites will be placed?
Every satellite will be separated in different angle and at different time from the launch vehicle in order to prevent collision between satellites. No space agency has launched such a large number of satellites in a single flight so far. In its 39th flight, PSLV will launch the 714-kg Cartosat-2 satellite for earth observation and 103 co-passenger satellites, together weighing about 664kg, at lift-off. The satellites will be placed in an orbit 505km above the Earth.
Of the 101 international co-passenger nano-satellites, 96 are from the US, and one each from Israel, Kazakhstan, the Netherlands, Switzerland and the United Arab Emirates. Eighty-eight of the American satellites belong to a San Francisco based start-up company Planet Inc which is sending a swarm of small satellites - 4.7 kg each, which it calls 'Doves'.
The three Indian satellites are Cartosat-2 series weighing 730 kg as primary payload, INS-IA and INS-1B, totally weighing 30 kg. The weight of all the satellites at launch will total 1,378 kg. These satellites carry a total of four payloads from the Space Applications Centre (SAC) and Laboratory for Electro Optics Systems (LEOS) of ISRO for conducting various experiments. In less than 600 seconds all 101 satellites will be released into space each travelling at a velocity of over 27,000 km per hour or at 40 times the speed of an average passenger airliner.
To give it a boost, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has given the Department of Space a massive 23 per cent increase in this year's budget. Under the space sciences section, the budget mentions provisions for "Mars Orbiter Mission II and Mission to Venus".
India plans to launch its second lunar mission in its first half of 2018. The Chandrayaan-2 will orbit, land and send a wheeled rover on the moon to collect lunar rock or soil. India also plans a mission to study the sun, plus proposed mission to Venus and a follow up to its first Mars mission. It will test its Tianzhou-1 cargo and resupply spacecraft in April -- a key technology needed for country's space station that's expected to be up and running by 2022. Further in future it will send a probe to the moon that will collect and return with soil sample. By the end of the decade, China says it will have also become the first country to land on the far side of the moon and also wants to land a rover on Mars.