ISRO launches record 20 satellites in a single mission

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Today at 9:25 am Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO)  launched in a single rocket a total of 20 satellites, including India's latest earth observation Cartosat-2 Series Satellite from the Satish Dhawan Space Center at Sriharikota. The total weight of all the 20 satellites is about 1,288 kg.

ISRO's PSLV C-34 rocket lifted off at 9.25 a.m. from the Second Launch Pad in Satish Dhawan Space Centre and some 16 minutes later placed Cartosat-2 Series satellite about 505 km above the Earth's orbit. Within the next 10 minutes, the remaining 19 satellites were eventually placed in the intended orbits.

Previous record of ISRO : The record that ISRO has held so far was launching 10 satellites in 2008. ISRO’s PSLV-C9 rocket launched a Remote Sensing satellite CARTOSAT-2A along with Indian Mini Satellite (IMS-1) and eight nanosatellites on April 28, 2008. This is ISRO's new record of launching 20 satellites.

Record of other countries : In 2014, Russia had launched 37 satellites in a single mission while the U.S. had launched 30 satellites in one go

Here are some of the satellites that have been launched by ISRO today :

Cartosat-2 : The 725.5 kg-weighing Cartosat-2 series satellite would be used for Earth observation. According to ISRO, the imagery sent by the satellite will be useful for cartographic applications, urban and rural applications, coastal land use and regulation, utility management like road networking.

Some key features of the satellite :

Orbit type - Circular Polar Sun Synchronous.

Orbit height - 505 km. 

Orbit inclination - 97.48 degrees.

Cartosat-2 carries a state-of-the-art panchromatic (PAN) camera that can take black and white pictures of the earth in the visible region of the electromagnetic spectrum. The mission life of the Cartosat satellite is about 5 years.

LAPAN-A3 (Indonesia) : The microsatellite is for Earth observation and is intended to be used to monitor land use, natural resource and environment. It has a mass of 120 kg.

M3MSat (Canada) :  Maritime Monitoring and Messaging Micro-Satellite is a technology demonstrator mission jointly funded and managed by Defense Research and Development Canada (DRDC) and the Canadian Space Agency (CSA). It's primary mission is to collect and study Automatic Identification System signals from low-Earth orbit. It has a mass of 85 kg.

GHGSat-D (Canada) : It has been built by Flight Laboratory of the University of Toronto Institute for Aerospace Studies. It  is meant for measuring the atmospheric concentration of greenhouse gases (Carbon Dioxide and Methane). It has a mass of 25.5 kg.

BIROS (Germany) : Berlin Infrared Optical System (BIROS) is a small scientific satellite from the German Aerospace Center and its mission objective is the remote sensing of high temperature events. It has a mass of 130 kg.

SkySat Gen2-1 (U.S.) : The satellite has been designed and built by Terra Bella, a Google company based in Mountain View, California in the U.S., It is the small Earth imaging satellite that is capable of capturing sub-meter resolution imagery and HD video. It has a mass of 110 kg.

Dove Satellites (U.S.) : A total of 12 Flock-2P Earth imaging satellites are to be launched in this mission. They would be packed in three dispensers. Each satellites would have a mass of  4.7 kg.

Sathyabamasat (Sathyabama University, Chennai) : The  satellite aims to collect data on green house gases. It has a mass of 1.5 kg.

Swayam (College of Engineering, Pune) : The satellite aims to provide point to point messaging services to the HAM (amateur radio) community. It has a mass of 1 kg.

Antrix Corporation :

Antrix Corporation Limited is the commercial arm of the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO). Its objective is to promote the ISRO's products, services and technologies.The company is a Public Sector Undertaking (PSU), wholly owned by the Government of India.

ISRO has launched satellites for Algeria, Argentina, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, France, Germany, Indonesia, Israel, Italy, Japan, Korea, Luxembourg, Singapore, Switzerland, The Netherlands, Turkey, United Kingdom and the United States of America.

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