ISRO has successfully launched its first space observatory ASTROSAT at 9.48 AM today from Sriharikota. India has joined a select club of nations having their own space observatories.
The astronomy satellite is a miniature version of the Hubble, the US-European joint space observatory that has discovered new galaxies and improved understanding of the universe.
1) It was 31st flight of ISRO’s work horse PSLV (Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle) today. (September 28, 2015). ASTROSAT is the country’s Multi Wavelength Space Observatory along with six foreign customer satellites into a 644.6 X 651.5 km orbit inclined at an angle of 6 deg to the equator.
2) This was the 30th consecutive successful flight by PSLV.
3) There were seven satellites in all carried by PSLV today and together it weighed about 1631 kg at lift-off.
4) During the period 1994 to 2015, there were 30 successful flights, in which PSLV has launched a total number of 84 satellites including the seven satellites successfully launched today.
5) 51 satellites have been launched by PSLV for customers from abroad . Today’s launch of six co-passenger satellites by PSLV-C30 was facilitated by Antrix Corporation Limited, the commercial arm of the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), a government of India Company under the Department of Space (DOS).
6) After separation from PSLV-C30, the two solar arrays of ASTROSAT were automatically deployed and the Spacecraft Control Centre at the Mission Operations Complex of ISRO Telemetry, Tracking and Command Network (ISTRAC) at Bangalore took control of ASTROSAT.
7) ASTROSAT is India’s first dedicated multi wavelength space observatory. This scientific satellite mission endeavours for a more detailed understanding of our universe.
8) ASTROSAT is designed to observe the universe in the Visible, Ultraviolet, low and high energy X-ray regions of the electromagnetic spectrum simultaneously with the help of its five payloads.
9) Costing ISRO Rs.178 crore, the satellite was originally conceived 20 years ago and the project was cleared in 2005. With this, “India will be the only country having a multi-wavelength space-based observatory capable of monitoring intensity variations in a broad range of cosmic sources,” said ISRO.
10) The astronomy satellite is a miniature version of the Hubble, the US-European joint space observatory that has discovered new galaxies and improved understanding of the universe.