After its successful heavy payload launch in July, ISRO is gearing up for the next mega launch in December 2015 carrying 500-kg TELOS-1 satellite of Singapore Technologies Electronics Ltd.
Indian Space Research Organisation’s commercial arm Antrix has signed up for the agreement to launch six satellites for Singapore on its workihorse Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) , which has gained fame since its launching of Chandrayaan and Mangalyaan missions.
The TeLOS-1 will be manufactured in Singapore for commercial and remote sensing operations, mineral exploration, agricultural surveys, climate change and maritime studies. ST Electronics has started the design of its the first made-in-Singapore commercial satellite TeLEOS-1 in 2013 to harness the commercial opportunities of space industry.
TeLEOS-1, weighing about 500 kilograms, is designed to orbit around the equator, at an orbital height of about 550km, and with an update rate of 90 minutes, it will provide satellite images of 1 metre ground sampling distance using its electro-optics camera.
“We are currently developing the first made-in-Singapore commercial satellite and will also focus on offering earth observation services for customers requiring images around the equatorial belt. These activities will serve to complement other polar orbiting satellites with a more frequent update rate.” said LEE Fook Sun, President, ST Electronics earlier.
In addition to utilising its own satellite to provide imagery and value-added services to customers, ST Electronics plans to collaborate with partners to tap on their complementary satellite images to enhance the offering of high quality geospatial solutions and value-added services to the market.
ST Electronics is the electronics arm of public listed Singapore Technologies Engineering Ltd (ST Engineering). Set up in May 2011, ST Electronics (Satellite Systems) is a joint venture of ST Electronics’ wholly owned subsidiary, ST Electronics (Satcom & Sensor Systems) Pte Ltd, Nanyang Technological University and DSO National Laboratories.
Undaunted by the international arbitration that has awarded damages of $670 million to Devas, a private firm with 33 per cent stake by Mauritius outfits, another 33 per cent by Deutsche Telekom, and about 30 per cent by some former ISRO employees.
While Antrix will contest the award, it is eager to offset the hole in its budget with more international contracts in the near future and is tapping all the markets from Southeast Asia to the US to bridge the gap. ANTRIX was able to generate a business of about Rs.1,800 crore last year and hopes to increase it rapidly in the next five years.
While the UK was a major customer earlier followed by some US and European customers, Singapore has emerged as the next major client. Currently, PSLV’s maximum capacity is 1700-1800 kg whereas many international heaviest launches are in the range of six to seven tonnes. ISRO is also planning about 26 more satellites belonging to six countries in next three years.
Another major satellite it is set to launch incldue the German Space Agency (GLR) mission called EnMap next year. With 23 missions launched successfully for foreign customers, Antrix has been exploring even higher payloads in the range of 2000 to 2200 kg class soon.
List of PSLV Launches
|Title||Launch Date||Launcher Type||Orbit||Payload|
|PSLV-C28||Jul 10, 2015||PSLV||LEO||DMC3 Mission|
|PSLV-C27||Mar 28, 2015||PSLV-XL||GSO|
|PSLV-C26||Oct 16, 2014||PSLV-XL||GTO||IRNSS 1C|
|PSLV-C23||Jun 30, 2014||PSLV-CA||GTO|
|PSLV-C24||Apr 04, 2014||PSLV-XL||GTO||IRNSS-1B|
|PSLV-C25||Nov 05, 2013||PSLV-XL||HEO||Mars Orbiter Mission Spacecraft|
|PSLV-C22||Jul 01, 2013||PSLV-XL||GTO||IRNSS-1A|
|PSLV-C20||Feb 25, 2013||PSLV-CA||SSPO||SARAL|
|PSLV-C21||Sep 09, 2012||PSLV-CA||SSPO|
|PSLV-C19||Apr 26, 2012||PSLV-XL||SSPO||RISAT-1|