Published: Thu, February 16, 2017
Research | By Elizabeth Houston

ISRO successfully launched record 104 satellites including Cartosat-2 in single mission


India successfully launched 104 satellites in a single mission on Wednesday, setting a world record of launching the most satellites at one go, according to its space agency.

The agency's Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle PSLV-C37 took off in the morning today at 9.28 am from Sriharikota space centre, on its 39th mission, with 104 satellites of which 101 belongs to global custormers. The Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle PSLV-C37 left Earth sharp at 9:28 am from the launch pad at the Satish Dhawan Space Centre.

96 American and one each satellite from Israel, Kazakhstan, Netherlands, Switzerland and the United Arab Emirates are present.

PSLV-C37 also carries two ISRO Nano satellites (INS-1A and INS-1B), as co-passenger satellites.

President Pranab Mukherjee and Prime Minister Narendra Modi congratulated the ISRO team for the successful launch.

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Cartostat-2 and the other smaller satellites together weighing about 664 kg at lift-off takes the total payload at liftoff to 1,378 kg.

Scientist at the ISRO have used the most powerful and heaviest rocket i.e. the XL variant, which was last used during the Mars Orbiter Mission (MOM) and during the Chandrayaan operation. Thus, the PSLV-C37 was carrying out an overall weight of almost 1500 Kgs.

Among the other satellites on the PSLV's payload were India's Cartosat-2 series satellite, which is capable of high-resolution imaging and aimed at Pakistan and China. The rocket took off today morning from the Sriharikota spaceport in Andhra Pradesh and we are really proud of this achievement. ISRO's own previous record stood at 20 satellites launched in June a year ago. There were 208 satellites launched in 2014, nearly double the amount the year before.

The Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) was launched after a 28-hour countdown for the launch that started at 5:28 AM on 14 February 2017. The previous record had been established in 2014 by Russian Federation, when it launched 37 satellites. Cartosat-2 series satellite, with a mission life of five years, will transmit images that would cater to regulation and use of coastal lands.

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