BENGALURU: Indian Space Research Organisation is scheduled to launch the communication satellite GSAT-29, on November 14. Despite initial concerns by ISRO that the cyclonic storm 'Gaja' might hinder the launch of the satellite, ISRO officials have now confirmed that the launch will go ahead as scheduled. This is the fifth launch by ISRO this year.
GSAT-29, a communication satellite, will be placed in orbit aboard the GSLV Mk-III D2 launcher from Satish Dhawan Space Centre, Sriharikota. The high throughput communication satellite weighs 3,423 kgs and has been designed for a mission life of 10 years. "... several new technologies such as Q/V-band payload, data transmission through optical communication link will be demonstrated," according to a statement by ISRO.
The high throughput communication satellite is intended to meet the communication requirements of users in the country, including those in remote areas. GSLV Mk-III D2 will inject the satellite into a geostationary transfer orbit with the required inclination to the equator. The satellite will then be placed in a final geostationary orbit using its onboard propulsion system, which may take few days after separation from the launcher.
Sources in ISRO said that all indications are that PSLV C43 carrying 31 different satellites, including a hyperspectral imaging satellite, is likely to be launched by the end of November.
Meanwhile, GSAT-11 which was recalled from being launched in May this year under controversial and costly circumstances will also be launched. While ISRO chairman R Sivan had tentatively set the date as November 30 earlier this year, sources said that GSAT-11 will be placed in orbit by the November end or early December.
It can be recalled that French satellite launch firm Arianespace had written to ISRO, forcing on it a condition to launch India’s GSAT-11 communication satellite — that it will be launched only if ISRO sends two of its other communication satellites, GSAT-30 and 31, for Arianespace to launch. The condition was imposed as ISRO missed its initial launch date and had cost ISRO Rs 950 cr. However, ISRO had defended the decision saying that the launch by Arianespace was since GSLV MK-III was unavailable and diverted for Chandrayaan-2. The launch by Arianespace would also increase the longevity of GSAT-11, he had added.