India to launch communication satellite July 15


Chennai: India’s Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) rocket will blast off July 15 evening carrying a communication satellite with transponders for communication and weather forceast services, the space agency said Thursday.

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Preparations for the launch of GSAT-12 are progressing well at the Satish Dhawan Space Centre in Sriharikota, around 80 km from Chennai, the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) said in a statement Thursday.

The GSAT-12 satellite weighs 1,410 kg at lift-off has 12 extended c-band transponders – automatic receivers and transmitters for communication and broadcast of signals.

The satellite is expected to serve the Very Small Aperture Terminal (VSAT) sector, which transmits data like point of sale transactions or to provide satellite internet access and others.

ISRO said the satellite has undergone necessary tests at Sriharikota and it has been filled with propellants June 28.

GSAT-12 will be integrated with the rocket July 3 after the clearance from the Launch Authorisation Board.

According to ISRO, the four stages/engines of the rocket has been fully assembled and tests are being conducted to check the electrical systems.

As to the sequence prior to the launch, ISRO said the rocket loaded with the satellite will be moved to the second launch pad July 10.

On July 13, the 52.5 hour countdown for the launch is expected to start.

The actual lift of the rocket is expected to be between 4.48 pm and 5.08 pm July 15.

Though PSLV rockets are largely used by ISRO to launch remote sensing/earth observation satellites, it has also been used to put into orbit communication satellites in geo-transfer orbit (GTO).

According to ISRO officials, the PSLV rocket that will carry GSAT-12 will weigh over 300 tonne-higher than the standard PSLV rocket that weigh around 290 tonne at lift off.