India’s ‘eye in the sky’ became sharper and wider as Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle -- PSLV-C38 -- on Friday morning successfully placed earth observation satellite Cartosat and 30 co-passenger satellites (29 foreign and one Indian) in their respective orbits.
The PSLV rocket standing 44.4 metre tall and weighing 320 ton tore into the morning skies at 9.29 a.m. with a growl breaking free of the earth's gravitational pull.
Around 16 minutes after lift-off, the rocket placed its main payload -Cartosat-2 Series Satellite-- in orbit. The satellite is the sixth in the Cartosat-2 series.
Twenty nine satellites belonged to 14 foreign countries -- Austria, Belgium, Chile, the Czech Republic, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Latvia, Lithuania, Slovakia, the UK and the US. One nano satellite was made by students of Noorul Islam University in Kanyakumari district of Tamil Nadu.
The 31 satellites weighed 955 kg.
The rocket's main cargo is India's 712 kg Cartosat-2 series satellite for earth observation.
This satellite is similar to the earlier Cartosat-2 series satellites.
The co-passenger satellites comprise 29 nano satellites weighing 243 kg and are from 14 countries - Austria, Belgium, Britain, Chile, Czech Republic, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Latvia, Lithuania, Slovakia, and the US - as well as one Indian nano satellite, NIUSAT.
The whole launch mission would get over in around 23 minutes.
The images sent by Cartosat satellite would be useful for cartographic, urban, rural, coastal land use, utility management like road network monitoring, water distribution, creation of land use maps, change detection to bring out geographical and manmade features and various other land information systems and geographical information system applications.
One of the 30 co-passenger satellites is the Indian nano satellite 15 kg NIUSAT belonging to Nooral Islam University, Tamil Nadu.
NIUSAT would provide multi-spectral imagery for agricultural crop monitoring and disaster management support applications.