FUNDING & POLICY
NEW DELHI — The Indian Space Research Organization has delayed the launch of its Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV-C15) scheduled for May 9, following a marginal drop in pressure in the second stage of the vehicle.
The drop in pressure “was noticed during mandatory checks carried out on the PSLV-C15 vehicle,” ISRO says. A new date for the launch of the mission will be decided after the results of the analysis are in; the delay is likely to be weeks.
PSLV-C15 will launch India’s Cartosat-2B, the Algerian ALSAT-2A satellite, the nanosatellites NLS 6.1 and NLS 6.2 from the University of Toronto, and Studsat — a satellite built by students from academic institutions in Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh. The launch will take place from Sriharikota (SHAR), ISRO’s launch center.
“In the past 15 years the PSLV has built a high reliability and can launch up to 1.6 tons,” a spokesman says. The PSLV was also used to launch India’s Chandrayaan-1 lunar mission.
Since 1996, ISRO has rapidly developed remote sensing satellites including the 0.7-meter Cartosat 2A. Remote sensing is useful for disaster-prone areas.
Meanwhile, results are still pending in the detailed analysis of flight data following the failure of a recent Geostationary Satellite Launch Vehicle mission. The 49-meter, three-stage GSLV-D3, carrying the GSAT-4 spacecraft, deviated from its flight path and splashed into the sea on April 15 (Aerospace DAILY, April 16).
- Neelam Mathews (email@example.com)