Watch: ISRO's PSLV C-44 rocket to carry student-built Kalamsat V2 satellite

WION Web Team
New Delhi, Delhi, IndiaUpdated: Jan 24, 2019, 08:20 PM IST


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The small 1.2 kg experimental satellite looks like a cube with a life mission of two months.

The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) is gearing up for its inaugural launch of 2019. The PSLV C-44 rocket will carry two satellites into orbit - one of them is a satellite for India's Defence Research and Development Organisation(DRDO). The co-passenger will be a student-built satellite - Kalamsat V2.

Kalamsat V2 is named after India's former president and aerospace scientist APJ Abdul Kalam. It is the first satellite built by Indian students to be launched by ISRO. A satellite launch usually costs somewhere between Rs 1-2 crore, however, Kalamsat V2 launch will be free.

The satellite has been built by Chennai-based students team "Spacekidz India" and costs Rs 12 lakh. Most members of the 14-member team are aged between 19 and 22, the lead scientist is 19-year-old Rifath Shaarook. An earlier satellite made by Spacekidz India, which is in its eighth year, was launched by NASA.

"It is an experiment, we are experimenting with different satellites, once this is done I hope this becomes a backup communication during disasters or taking remote-sensing images," Shaarook said.

"The future is bright," he added gleefully.

The small 1.2 kg experimental satellite looks like a cube with a life mission of two months. The research and development for the satellite was done in quick two months and the fabrication took just six days.

Srimathy Kesan, mission director, said: "For the last six months I have been waiting for such a moment because anyone can pay money and get into a rocket but every Indian should do something for the country and I got into space research because the Moon is the ultimate destination."

Kalamsat V2 will be the first to use PS4 as an orbital platform with Microsat-R as an imaging satellite. 

The launch will take place on Thursday night from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre in Sriharikota off the Bay of Bengal in Andhra Pradesh's Nellore district. The four-stage PSLV with alternating solid and liquid stages has so far launched 53 Indian and 269 satellites of international customers.

In its last mission, on November 29th last year, ISRO had successfully injected India's earth observation satellite HysIS onboard PSLV C43 into its designated orbit.