Sunday, December 19, 2010

Countdown of satellite launch begins today

The countdown for ISRO’s GSLV-F06 rocket, which will carry GSAT-5P, India’s latest communication satellite, from Satish Dhawan space centre at Sriharikota in Andhra Pradesh begins at 11.01 am on Sunday. GSAT-5P will blast off to space from Sriharikota on Monday.

Space Research Organization’s (ISRO’s) director (publications and public relations) S. Satish said there are 24 C band transponders and 12 extended C band transponders in the 2,310 kg satellite which will be used for communication purposes. “After the satellite is put into final orbit, we will test it and within a month’s time the satellite will be fully operational. The transponders will be used by very small aperture terminal (VSAT) operators for communication,” he said.

Mr. Satish pointed out that the allotment of transponders would be done after the satellite was put into orbit. Monday's launch is to replace Insat2E that was launched in 1999 to cater to Asia and Australia.

The 51-meter-tall, 418-tonne, GSLV is a three-stage satellite launch vehicle. The vehicle’s third stage has the country’s indigenous cryogenic engine which is more efficient and provides more thrust for every kilogram of propellant it burns. The overall length of the vehicle has been increased by about 1.3 meters, compared to previous versions. ISRO has till date launched six GSLV rockets with satellites, of which only four missions were fully successful.



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