Indian space agency ISRO has begun preparations for the launch of its 32nd flight of PSLV commercial mission C-29 that will carry six Singaporean satellites weighing a total of around 625 kg on December 16 evening.
The satellites will be lofted off into a 550-km circular orbit inclined at 15 degress to the equator. The major Singaporean earth observation satellite called TeLEOS-1, weighing 400-kg, will be accompanied by 5 other co-passenger satellites including two microsatellites and three nano-satellites. TeLEOS-1 is the first Singapore commercial Earth observation electro-optical satellite designed and developed by ST Electronics.
PSLV-C29 will be launched from the First Launch Pad at Satish Dhawan Space Centre (SDSC) SHAR, Sriharikota as a ‘Core-alone’ rocket without using the solid strap-on motors. The rocket is expected to blast off from the Sriharikota rocket port at 6 pm on December 16. The Indian rocket will be carrying six satellites all from Singapore.
Apart from TeLEOS-1, the other five satellites are:
VELOX-CI is a 123-kg microsatellite designed and developed by Nanyang Technological University (NTU) of Singapore.
VELOX-II is a 13-kg 6U-Cubesat tech demonstrator with three payloads — communications paylod, GPS experimental payload and Fault tolerant Pyload, which was developed ny NTU and it will be operated from the ground station in NTU.
Athenoxat-1, a tech demonstrator nano-satellite is designed, developed and built by Microspace Rapid Pvt. Ltd. in its Singapore lab, will be used for Earth remote sensing based on a 3U-Cubesat form factor.
Kent Ridge-1 is a 78-kg microsatellite with a medium resolution VNIR Hypersepectral camera (GSD 44m) and short wave infrared (SWIR) Hyperspectral camera (GSD 110m). It has another real-time high resolution video camera of resolution 6m. These visual equipement will help for UHF Telemetry link and X-band data downlink.
In addition Galassia is another 2U cube satellite.
However, the mission will fly on its ‘core’ engine with boosters, which was its standard feature. The C-29 mission of PSLV rocket will mark the last mission in 2015 by ISRO, bringing the total satellites lunched in the year 2015 to 14 satellites (3 Indian and 11 foreign) from its rocket port in Sriharikota.
Out of them 13 were launched by the main work horse PSLV and one communication satellite, GSAT-6, was launched by Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle (GSLV).
With 6 Singaporean satellites scheduled to be launched next week, ISRO’s tally of satellites launched in 2015 will be 20. In addition, the comunication satellite, GSAT-15, was the only one sent aboard the Ariane rocket of the European space agency in 2015. Out of 21, 17 are foreign satellites and four are Indian satellites.