The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) had in August revealed plans of launching four key satellites within the next three months, and close to seventy satellites in the coming years. ISRO has already launched ten satellites between August 2015 and August 2016. As per the institute’s upcoming plans, scientists will aim at sending up four more satellites — INSAT-3DR and SCATSAT-1 in September this year, GSAT-18 in October and ResourceSat-2A in November 2016. Officials have now announced that the two September launches are ready to go up soon.
The launch of the Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle, or GSLV, carrying the geostationary weather satellite scheduled to be launched first was slated to be launched earlier but was postponed due to a technical issue discovered while carrying out tests. The launch was earlier scheduled for August 28, 2016.
The satellite scheduled to launch first this September is the INSAT-3DR, followed by the SCATSAT. The INSAT-3DR is a follow-on to the previously launched INSAT-3D, which was sent up in 2013 from French Guiana. The SCATSAT is a weather forecasting satellite that has been developed in India.
“INSAT-3DR is scheduled for September 8 and by end of September, we will have SCATSAT along with an Algerian satellite as its co-passenger,” ISRO chairman AS Kiran Kumar told reporters in Bangalore at the Bangalore Space Expo-2016 (BSX-2016).
The SCATSAT, a weather satellite, will be equipped with the ability to monitor sea surface winds and predict cyclones. A PSLV, or a Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle, will be used to launch the SCATSAT, which is expected to be a replacement for the Oceansat-2.
ISRO officials said that an Algerian satellite along with two other satellites will be co-passengers to ScatSat during this launch.