In a first of its kind initiative, ISRO installed on-board cameras in Resourcesat 2A which was successfully launched from Sriharikota in Andhra Pradesh on Thursday, enabling the space agency get clear confirmation of separation of strap on motors, satellites and heat shields.
The camera on the outer surface of the rocket enabled scientists and the public to visibly see the separation of the satellite and solar panel deployment after the successful launch into the intended orbit, on ISRO’s website.
From another camera, the separation of strap-on motors and heat shield was also visibly seen soon after lift off. ISRO had released footage recorded from the cameras fitted on top of the rocket, in its website.
“We had already installed this feature in GSLV,which was launched before much before Resourcesat-2A. The cameras in RESOURCESAT 2A recorded separation of the satellite and heat shields. This feature is an additional confirmation”, an official who did not wish to be named told PTI.
What is significant with installation of these cameras on RESOURCESAT 2A was the ability to have clear footage of separation of strap on motors, satellites and heat shields from the rocket, he said.
“Earlier, one could see the rocket lifting off from the either one of the launch pads (at Sriharikota) and through a cursor at Satish Dhawan Space Centre, track its location and also be aware whether it was going on the correct path. With the on-board cameras one can get double confirmation”, he said.
Asked whether these cameras would have incurred a heavy cost as they need to withstand extreme temperature, the official said the cost was not that significant.
He replied in the affirmative when asked whether future rockets scheduled for launch by ISRO would have this feature.
Yesterday, India’s latest Remote Sensing satellite, RESOURCESAT-2A was successfully launched by ISRO’s workhorse Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle from the launch pad at Sriharikota in Andhra Pradesh.
The remote sensing satellite would be useful for agricultural applications like crop area and production estimation, drought monitoring, soil mapping and farm advisories generation.