The Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) will conduct the maiden flight of its newly developed Small Satellite Launch Vehicle (SSLV) on August 7 ahead of the Independence Day celebrations.
“SSLV-D1/EOS-02 mission is scheduled to launch on Sunday, August 7, 2022, at 9:18 am (IST) from Satish Dhawan Space Center (SDSC), Sriharikota,” the space agency said on Twitter.
Significantly, India was all set to celebrate the 75th Independence Day with the first manned space flight, as per the deadline set by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in his speech from the ramparts of the Red Fort on Independence Day 2018.
Work on the Gaganyaan mission, the country’s first manned flight to space, was delayed due to the pandemic, with the first abort test scheduled for later this year to use the crew escape system in case of an emergency mid-flight Can go
The SSLV mission was also delayed by a few years due to the pandemic. Experts were of the view that this could hamper the space agency’s economic prospects in the global space market as the new launch vehicle has to take into account the accelerated turn-around time for missions, keeping in mind the commercial launch of small satellites. Designed to keep
In its maiden flight, the SSLV will carry one of India’s earth observation satellites – EOS-2 – which will have applications in the mapping and development of various GIS applications.
It will have a mid-wavelength infrared camera and a long-wavelength infrared camera with a resolution of 6 metres. The satellite, weighing 142 kg, will have a mission life of ten months.
“The SSLV launch was long overdue. It will remove the burden of commercial launches from the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV). And, will likely offer cheap, quick launches for smaller satellites. Ajay Lele, Senior Fellow, Manohar Parrikar Institute for Defense Studies and Analyses, said, “ISRO is encouraging space startups to do the same, especially now.”
In its maiden flight itself, the SSLV will also carry Azadisat, a satellite developed by 750 rural students from across the country coordinated by SpaceKidz India, a space start-up.
The satellite was sent to Sriharikota on Monday, which is ready for integration with the launch vehicle.
Primarily designed as a commercial vehicle, the SSLV is likely to cost a quarter of the current PSLV. It can also be assembled by a team of six within seven days as compared to a team of 600 people which takes a few months to assemble PSLV.