India lines up three PSLV launches this year

Last Updated: Saturday, May 14, 2011 - 20:39

Bangalore: Indian Space Research Organisation is lining up three PSLV launches from Sriharikota spaceport by October this year, its Chairman K Radhakrishnan said today.

He said PSLV-C17 would launch GSAT-12, equipped with 12 extended C-band transponders, in July.

PSLV-C18 and PSLV-C19 would launch Megha-tropiques, an Indo-French joint mission, and microwave remote-sensing satellite, RISAT-1, with synthetic aperture radar during
September-October this year.

ISRO officials said India`s GSAT-8 satellite is scheduled to be launched by European space consortium Arianespace`s Ariane-5 rocket at 0207 hours (IST) on May 20 from French Guiana.

Radhakrishnan said GSAT-8, one of the heaviest satellites built by ISRO, weighs 3100 kg at lift-off and is equipped with 24 Ku-band transponders which would augment direct-to-home services.

Meanwhile, ISRO officials said the Failure Analysis Committee, headed by former ISRO Chairman G Madhavan Nair, set up by ISRO following the failure of the GSLV-F06 mission, and the Programme Review and Strategy Committee, chaired by K Kasturirangan, to look into the future of the GSLV programme, have submitted their reports.

Reports of these committees are currently being reviewed by eminent national experts, including Dr A P J Abdul Kalam, Prof. M G K Menon, Prof. Yash Pal, Prof. U R Rao, Dr. R Chidambaram and Prof. R Narasimha, officials said.

Radhakrishnan said the Space Commission at its meeting scheduled on May 24 would look at the reviews.

He refused to give a time-line for India`s ambitious human space flight programme, saying: "Now, with the state of GSLV(proposed to be used for this mission), first priority is to make the GSLV a reliable vehicle".

Director of ISRO Satellite Centre, T K Alex, echoed Radhakrishnan`s position, saying there are "issues" regarding GSLV and ISRO is "concerned about" GSLV.

The GSLV-F06, with GSAT-5P on board, failed on December 25 last year in a set-back to ISRO.

On the controversial Antrix-Devas deal -- Antrix is the commercial arm of ISRO --, Radhakrishnan reiterated that the Government has annulled the contract.

PTI



First Published: Saturday, May 14, 2011 - 20:39

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