Sriharikota (AP): In a textbook launch,
India`s Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) Monday
successfully placed into orbit remote sensing satellite
Cartosat-2B and four other satellites after a perfect lift off
from the spaceport here.
At the end of an over 51-hour countdown, the 44.4
metre-tall four-stage PSLV-C-15, costing Rs 260 crore, blasted
off from a launch pad at the Satish Dhawan Space Centre with
ignition of the core first stage and placed the satellites in
orbit one after the other.
Visibly relieved scientists, headed by ISRO chairman
Dr K Radhakrishnan, cheered as ISRO`s workhorse PSLV soared
into clear skies at 9.22 AM from the spaceport in the East
Coast in Andhra Pradesh, about 100 km north of Chennai.
The PSLV launch assumes significance as it comes about
three months after ISRO suffered a major setback on April 15
when the Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle (GSLV-D3),
which was launched using an Indian-designed and built
cryogenic engine for the first time, failed and fell into the
Bay of Bengal.
Cartosat-2B is an advanced remote sensing satellite
built by ISRO. This is the latest in the Indian remote sensing
satellite series and the 17th in this series.
Cartosat-2B is mainly intended to augment remote
sensing data services to the users of multiple spot scene
imagery with 0.8 metre spatial resolution and 9.6 km swath in
Cartosat-2 and 2A, two Indian remote sensing
satellites in orbit, are currently providing such services.
A set of four satellites including Studsat built by
students of seven engineering colleges in Andhra Pradesh and
Karnataka, Alsat from Algeria, two nano satellites from Canada
and Switzerland, and a pico (very small) satellite called
Oceansat 2 accompanied Cartosat 2 on its trip to orbit.
Planning Commission Vice-Chairman Montek Singh
Ahuluwalia, and former ISRO chief Dr K Kasturirangan witnessed
"It has been a wonderful experience. The ISRO has made
the country proud," Ahluwalia said, congratulating the
scientists after the perfect take off.
Cartosat-2B carries a panchromatic camera similar to
that of its predecessors - Cartosat-2 and 2A and was capable
of imaging a swath (geographical strip of land) of 9.6 km with
a resolution of 0.8 metre.
The multiple spot scene imagery sent by Cartosat-2B
camera would also be useful for village/cadastral level
resource assessment and mapping, detailed urban and
infrastructure planning and development, transportation system
planning, preparation of large-scale cartographic maps,
preparation of micro watershed development plans and
monitoring of development works of village.
Alsat from Algeria, weighing 116 kg, is also a remote
sensing satellite. The two nano satellites, NLS 6.1 and NLS
6.2, weigh six kg and one kg each. Studsat weighs less than
Besides launching 17 Indian satellites, PSLV has also
launched 22 foreign satellites during 1994-2009 into polar sun
synchronous, geosynchronous transfer, highly elliptical and
low earth orbits and has repeatedly proved its reliability and
One important modification compared to the previous
flights of PSLV is the use of dual launch adopter to carry two
large satellites, ISRO sources said.
Soon after injection into the orbit and separation
from the PSLV C-15 fourth stage, the two solar panels of
Cartosat 2B will be automatically deployed, they said.