India is flying high, yet again. In a proud moment for the country, the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) on Wednesday successfully launched a record number of 104 satellites under a single mission from the spaceport in Sriharikota in Andhra Pradesh.
With the launch of over 100 satellites, India has now broken the record of Russia, which previously accomplished the feat of launching record number of satellites at 37, followed by the US space agency NASA, which has launched 29.
This is the highest number of satellites ever launched in single mission. The Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle PSLV-C37 left Earth sharp at 9:28 am from the launch pad at the Satish Dhawan Space Centre.
The rocket first injected Cartosat-2 series satellite into orbit and then placed 103 nano satellites in a gap of about 30 minutes. The 103 nano satellites included 96 from the US.
As the scientists at the Mission Control centre applauded, ISRO Chairman A S Kiran Kumar announced: “All 104 satellites successfully placed in orbit. My hearty congratulations to the entire ISRO team for the wonderful job they have done.”
In June 2015, ISRO had launched 23 satellites at a go. Prime Minister Narendra Modi, President Pranab Mukherjee and other top leaders took it to Twitter to hail and congratulate ISRO for the successful launch.
In the complex mission, the PSLV-C37 placed the 714 kg Cartosat-2 series satellite into the orbit and then ISRO’s nano satellites INS-1A and INS-1B were injected in an 505 km polar Sun Synchronous Orbit (SSO).
The launch of other 101 nano satellites belonging to foreign nations then took place.
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INS-1A and INS-1B will carry a total of four different payloads from Space Applications Centre (SAC) and Laboratory for Electro Optics Systems (LEOS) of ISRO for conducting various experiments, ISRO said.
Cartosat-2 series satellite, with a mission life of five years, will send images that would cater to coastal land use and regulation, road network monitoring, distribution of water, creation of land use maps among others.