BENGALURU: India's Polar rocket on Sunday successfully launched Amazonia-1 satellite of Brazil from the spaceport, in the first mission of the year for space agency ISRO from Satish Dhawan Space Centre at 10:24 am.
The 637-kg Amazonia-1, which became the first Brazilian satellite to be launched from India, is an optical earth observation satellite of National Institute for Space Research (INPE). It is the first dedicated PSLV commercial mission by New Space India Limited (NSIL)-- commercial arm of Department of Space.
This is also the first time Brazil is launching its satellite on an Indian rocket. It is the first satellite that is completely designed, tested, integrated and operated by National Institute for Space Research (INPE) Brazil.
Amazonia-1 carries with it a wide field camera with 850 km swath and 60m resolution. It has two solar panels to charge its Lithium Ion Batteries. The optical Earth observation satellite has a lifespan of more than four years.
It will be another satellite for Brazil to monitor the Amazon region and the deforestation therein. It is meant to help analyse diversified agriculture across the area of Brazil.
Brazilian minister for Science and Technology and Innovation Marcos Pontes said "many years have gone into the satellite and the moment represented the pinnacle of all efforts by many from the National Institute of Space Research, Brazil and the Brazilian Space Agency."
Pontes said "the satellite has a very crucial mission in Brazil -- it is another satellite to monitor the Amazon and other biomes in Brazil and represents new era of Brazilian industry for satellite development. He said the multi mission platform can be used for other satellites."
He said they couldn't have chosen a better place than India. He further added that this was an important step in the partnership of the two states.
"I am extremely happy to declare that PSLV-C51 successfully launched in precise orbit Aamazonia-1 today. The satellite is in very good health and solar panels have been deployed," Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) Chairman K Sivan announced amid applause from the scientists.
This is the first commercial launch of NSIL. NSIL CMD Narayanan said that in the peak of COVID-19, Indian space sector stepped out from the old to the new. NSIL under department of Space had its presence in the earlier three PSLV missions through customer auxiliary payloads, he said this was the first dedicated mission of NSIL with the launch of first totally-Brazilian built Earth Observation Satellite.
NSIL will also provide tracking service from its facility
The mission is being undertaken under a commercial arrangement with Space Flight Inc USA and injected 18 other satellites in their respective orbits. These include a cluster of 12 satellites by SpaceBee, USA, one ARC satellite by DRDO, one satellite by Spacekits India, three satellited developed by students from Jeppiaar Institute of Technology, Sriperambudur, G H Raisoni College of Engineering Nagpur, and Sri Shakthi Institute of Engineering and Technology Coimbatore.
Hands full this year, says Sivan
Our hands are full this year, said Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) chairman K Sivan on Sunday. He was speaking at the launch of Amazonia-1, . Sivan said that ISRO has 14 missions lined up this year.
“As many as seven are launch vehicle missions and six are satellite missions. One is the unmanned Gaganyaan mission slated at the end of 2021,” he said. “ISRO will rise to the occasion and achieve these targets towards meeting national demands,” he said.
Warning people that the pandemic was not over yet, he said that the work at the organisation would go
on while maintaining all quality norms.