ISRO to launch earth observation satellite on November 7
India will launch its latest earth observation satellite EOS-01 and nine international customer spacecraft onboard its Polar rocket PSLV-C49 from the spaceport of Sriharikota in Andhra Pradesh on November 7, ISRO said on Wednesday.
This is the first launch by the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) since the COVID-19 induced lockdown came into force in March.
ISRO Chairman K Sivan had said in June that ten space missions being prepared for launch this year have been 'disturbed' due to the lockdown.
EOS-01 is intended for applications in agriculture, forestry and disaster management support, ISRO said.
"The launch is tentatively scheduled at 3.02 pm on November 7 subject to weather conditions from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre at Sriharikota", it said in a statement.
The customer satellites are being launched under commercial agreement with NewSpace India Limited (NSIL), Department of Space, the space agency said, without giving further details.
This will be the 51st mission of ISRO's workhorse Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle.
In view of the strict COVID-19 pandemic norms in place at the launch centre, gathering of media personnel there was not planned and the viewing gallery will be closed, ISRO said.
However, the live telecast of the launch will be available on ISRO website, Youtube, Facebook, and Twitter channels, it added.
Speaking to PTI in June, Sivan had said ISRO will make an assessment of the impact of the lockdown on its missions.
Image: The News Minute
Because of this (pandemic), everything got disturbed. We have to make an assessment after the COVID-19 issue is resolved, he had said.
In another development, the NASA-ISRO Synthetic Aperture Radar (NISAR) satellite is expected to be launched by 2022, according to a joint statement issued after a strategic dialogue between India and the US on Tuesday.
India and the US have also decided to share Space Situational Awareness information, which will catalyse efforts to create the conditions for a safe and sustainable space environment, it said.
The two sides also expressed the intent to continue the India-US Space Dialogue as well as discussions on areas of potential space defense cooperation.
The joint statement, issued after the 2+2 strategic dialogue between Defence Minister Rajnath Singh, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar and their US counterparts Secretary of States Michael R Pompeo and Secretary of Defense Mark T Esper, said, "...the ministers applauded the ongoing collaboration between Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) and National Aeronautics and Space Administration, including on the NASA-ISRO Synthetic Aperture Radar (NISAR) satellite scheduled to be launched by 2022."
The space agencies of the two countries had signed an agreement in 2014 to conduct the joint NISAR mission to co-develop and launch a dual-frequency synthetic aperture radar on an Earth observation satellite.
(Disclaimer: Additional background information has been added to this PTI copy for context)