Aryabhata: All you need to know about India's first satellite launched by ISRO

The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) successfully launched its first satellite named Aryabhata into space on April 19, 1975. 

Aryabhata: All you need to know about India's first satellite launched by ISRO
Image credit: ISRO

New Delhi: The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) successfully launched its first satellite named Aryabhata into space on April 19, 1975. The satellite was launched by Russia from Kapustin Yar, a rocket launch and development site using a Kosmos-3M launch vehicle.

Here are some interesting facts about the first unmanned Indian satellite which you probably didn't know: 

  • Aryabhata satellite was built by ISRO to conduct experiments in X-ray astronomy, aeronomics, and solar physics.
  • The 360-kilogram satellite was named Aryabhata by India's first woman Prime Minister, Indira Gandhi after the prominent Indian astronomer and mathematician bearing the same name.
  • The spacecraft was a 26-sided polygon with a diameter of 1.4 metre.
  • The launch came from an agreement between India and the Soviet Union directed by UR Rao and signed in 1972.
  • Before the launch, a power failure in the satellite's electrical power system halted experiments for four days. 
  • The historic event was celebrated by the Reserve Bank of India satellite's and the image of the satellite appeared on the reverse of Indian 2 rupee banknotes between 1976 and 1997 and one rupee note number.
  • The cost of the project was estimated at 3 crores, however it cost a little more than that.
  • The satellite had its data receiving centre in Bangalore, where a toilet was converted to serve the purpose.
  • The satellite re-entered atmosphere of Earth after 17 years on 11 February 1992.

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