Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) chairman K Sivan said India is eyeing to launch 32 space missions in this year. In a New Year message to his employees on Tuesday, Sivan said: "The year 2019 promises to be challenging to the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) community with 32 planned missions." Among the ISRO’s achievements in 2018 were launch of the heaviest satellite GSAT-29 (3,423 kg) on November 14 and building the heaviest communication satellite GSAT-11 (5,854 kg), launched on December 5 onboard the Arianespace space agency's rocket from French Guiana on the north Atlantic coast of South America.
Here are things to know about ISRO’s missions:
# Chandrayaan-2: The missions include the second lunar mission Chandrayaan-2 to land on the moon with lander and rover. The Rs 800-crore lunar mission will the 25th from the second launch pad of the space port at Sriharikota in Andhra Pradesh, about 90km northeast of Chennai.
# Gaganyaan: India's maiden human space mission in 2021-22, Gaganyaan, will also be pursued this year. "Gaganyaan activities will go in full steam to accomplish the various development and qualification milestones," Sivan said.
# Radar Imaging Satellite (RISAT): The ISRO is also aiming to re-instate its microwave remote sensing capability through the Radar Imaging Satellite (RISAT) series and hopes to attain geo-imaging capability through Geo Imaging Satellite (GISAT) series.
ISRO’s 2018 achievements:
# Sivan said 2018 had many firsts for ISRO, which undertook 16 missions, of which seven were accomplished in 35 days.
"The national confidence in ISRO is reflected in the highest ever allocation of about Rs 30,000-crore for 23 new and continuation programmes in a single year," Sivan said.
# The ISRO has received approval for the Small Satellite Launch Vehicle (SSLV), along with a dedicated launch pad, and is working on reusable launch vehicle development, Sivan noted.
# "The approval of 30 Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) and 10 GSLV Mk-III operational flights, along with development of semicryogenic stage, uprated cryogenic stage and all-electric spacecraft propulsion will accelerate ISRO towards new capabilities, Sivan added.
(With agency inputs)