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ISRO to stick to Cartosat-2B launch on May 9

An artist's impression of Cartosat-2B satellite in orbit. A file photo

BANGALORE (PTI): Undeterred by the GSLV-D3 mission failure, India is going ahead with the launch of an advanced remote-sensing satellite Cartosat-2B, now tentatively fixed for May 9 from Sriharikota spaceport.

The high-resolution spacecraft, designed for an operational life of five years, is slated to be launched from the first launchpad on May 9 around 10 am, ISRO spokesperson S Satish told PTI here on Friday.

Thursday’s GSLV-D3 mission to flight-test the indigenous cryogenic engine and stage for the first time ended in failure after the rocket veered off course and plunged into the sea.

GSLV and PSLV missions are independent of each other. ISRO officials said there is no change in its earlier announced plans to launch PSLV in the first half of May – now fixed for May 9.

“It (Cartosat-2B) will give pictures of 0.8 metre resolution,” ISRO Chairman K Radhakrishnan has told PTI. In simple terms, the single panchromatic camera on board this cartographic satellite would be able to identify and take pictures of a moving car.

Thus, this highly-agile satellite, weighing around 690 kg, is expected to give a boost to the tasks of infrastructure and urban planning. The camera provides scene specific spot imageries for cartographic and a host of other civilian applications.

Cartosat-2B would add to the capability of the two operational spacecraft in the series. “The advantage is when you have three satellites, you get more coverage in a day,” Radhakrishnan has said.

Cartosat-2B would be launched by core-alone – without strap-on boosters – PSLV.

A 120-kg Algerian satellite – a commercial launch contract bagged by ISRO's marketing arm Antrix Corporation, two Canadian nano satellites and Studsat, built by University students in Hyderabad and Bangalore, would be part of the mission.

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