India begins countdown to launch 31 satellites on Friday

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January 12 (ANI): Union Minister Dr Jitendra Singh on Friday credited Prime Minister Narendra Modi for the successes Indian Space Research Organisation's (ISRO) has achieved during the past four years. The total weight of all the 31 satellites carried onboard PSLV-C40 is about 1323 kg. More than half of the micro and nano satellites were for the Unites States, and the remainder India, Canada, Finland, France, South Korea and the United Kingdom.

India began countdown early Thursday for launching 31 satellites in a Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) from its spaceport here, said the space agency.

The flight on Friday is the first since a rare mission failure on August 31 a year ago when a PSLV rocket did not release a protective heat shield that cocoons a rocket's satellite payloads from the high temperatures during the journey into space.

The satellites were launched in two orbits, 30 of them at 550 kilometers from the earth and the remaining at 359 kilometers.


The rocket weighs about 1,323kg, said a senior official at the ISRO, who did not wish to be named, Reuters said.

"PSLV-C40 is a highly sophisticated surveillance tool to keep an eye on Indian borders and will help the government track progress of infrastructure projects", said Pallava Bagla, a science writer and co-author of "Reaching for the Stars: India's Journey to Mars".

The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) had suffered a setback after the failure of the earlier PSLV-C39 mission in August previous year.

Cartosat-2 will be used to map rural and urban areas, road and highway networks, coastal areas, and generate land-use maps, Isro said, while Microsat and the nanosatellite are "technology demonstrators" that will test satellite designs for future missions.

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