It is indeed a proud and historic moment for India as the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) has launched the record 104 satellites from Sriharikota.
ISRO had commenced the 28-hour countdown for the single mission launch on Tuesday. With this launch, India is all set to script history by becoming the first country to launch more than 100 satellites at one go.
ISRO said that the Mission Readiness Review committee and Launch Authorisation Board gave its go ahead for the launch following which countdown for the launch of PSLV-C37/Cartosat2 Series satellite mission kicked off at 5:28 am.
The filling of the propellant for the rocket was also commenced by the scientists, it said. The 104 satellites will be carried by ISRO's workhorse Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle PSLV-C37, which will be going on its 39th mission.
How to watch live:
The launch of PSLV-C37/Cartosat-2 Series along with 103 co-passenger satellite can be witnessed live from Sriharikota on Feb 15,2017, beginning at 9:00 hrs a.m (India time).
The launch will be telecasted live on Doordarshan and webcast on ISRO's website from 09:00 hrs onwards.
Some facts about ISRO's mega-launch:
1. ISRO's Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV-C37) will carry 103 satellites from Satish Dhawan Space Centre in Sriharikota in Andhra Pradesh on February 15.
2. 100 out of the total 103 satellites are foreign, including the US and Germany, while 3 belong to India.
3. S Somnath, Director of the Liquid Propulsion Systems Centre of ISRO, says the space agency is making a century by launching more than 100 satellites at one go.
4. Earlier, ISRO had plans to launch 83 satellites in the last week of January out of which 80 were foreign ones. But later, 20 more satellites belonging to foreign countries were added due to which the launch was postponed.
5. The 100 satellites will be micro-small satellites and will be launched using a PSLV-C37. The weight of the payload will be 1350 kgs, of which 500-600 kgs will be the satellite's weight.
Previous record holders:
ISRO had launched record 20 satellites under single mission in 2016. Russia holds a record of launching highest number of satellites at 37, followed by the US space agency NASA, which has launched 29.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi's pet project:
Prime Minister Narendra Modi's pet South Asian satellite project will be launched in March this year. The South Asian satellite will be a part of GSAT-9, which will be launched in March this year.
The communication satellite was scheduled to be launched in December 2016, but was slightly delayed as some other satellites are to be launched before that.
Sources said talks with Afghanistan to have the country on-board for the project is in its final stages.
Envisaged as a gift to its neighbours, the project, earlier known as SAARC satellite, faced stiff resistance from Pakistan. The neighbouring country wanted it to be launched under the aegis of the South Asian regional forum. It later backed out of the project.
Apart from India, the satellite will benefit Sri Lanka, Maldives, Bangladesh, Nepal and Bhutan.