CHENNAI: After nearly a year of silence, Sriharikota is back in action with Indian Space Research Organisation’s PSLV-C49 successfully lifting off from the first launch pad at Satish Dhawan Space Centre on Saturday afternoon.
The rocket, in its 51th flight, carried an all-weather earth imaging satellite EOS-01, previously called RISAT-2BR2, and nine foreign satellites.
The rocket lifted off at 3.12pm, instead of at the scheduled time of 3.02pm. The launch was postponed by 10 minutes due to lightning that could damage electronics onboard the rocket.
More than 15 minutes after liftoff, the launch vehicle successfully injected its primary payload, EOS-01, into a low earth orbit. It was followed by nine customer satellites.
EOS-01 carried an X-band synthetic-aperture radar. The space agency said EOS-01 is an earth observation satellite intended for applications in agriculture, forestry and disaster management support.
The foreign satellites include an R2 satellite from Lithuania, which was a technology demonstration, four Kleos (KSM-1A/1B/1C/1D) satellites from Luxembourg for maritime applications and four Lemur (Lemur-1/2/3/4) satellites from the US meant for multi-mission remote sensing application.
Saturday’s launch was the first launch for Isro after the Covid-19 pandemic delayed its schedules. It was 76th launch vehicle mission from the Sriharikota spaceport, 38th launch from the first launch pad and second flight of PSLV with ‘DL’ variant carrying two strap-on boosters.