India’s 100th space mission puts two satellites into orbit

The Indian space programme started 50 years ago and the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) has now achieved its 100th mission. Of course there is a debate on whether this is money is well spent considering the many needs in the country. My own view is that it is. The long term development of technology, I think, takes precedence over some short term benefits if the money was spent elsewhere.

Daily Mail:The Indian space programme reached yet another milestone with the successful launch of the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) carrying two foreign satellites from the Satish Dhawan spaceport, Sriharikota, in Andhra Pradesh on Sunday morning. 

This is the Indian Space Research Organisation’s (ISRO) 100th mission, which began with an experimental satellite called Aryabhata launched by a Russian rocket in April 1975. 

Incidentally, 2012 also marks 50 years of the start of the programme beginning with sounding rockets launched from Thumba in Kerala. …… 

The launch was delayed by two minutes – from 9.51 am to 9.53 am – after a safety analysis of data relating to space debris and asteroids. 

ISRO officials said this was a normal precaution taken to ensure safe journey for satellites to avoid any collision with space objects. 

Both satellites have been placed into their orbits precisely.

The count of 100 space missions includes 63 Indian satellites, 36 launch vehicle missions and one reusable space recovery mission.

The Hindu: 

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Sunday congratulated scientists of the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) for the successful launch of the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle C-21 from Sriharikota.

Expressing happiness at witnessing the launch, Dr. Singh complimented the Department of Space and the ISRO fraternity on this “spectacular success.”

“As ISRO’s 100th space mission, today’s [Sunday’s] launch is a milestone in our nation’s space capabilities,” he told a gathering of scientists that included the former ISRO chiefs.

Dr. Singh also congratulated EADS Astrium of France and the Osaka Institute of Technology of Japan on the successful launch of their satellites. This achievement was a testimony to the commercial competitiveness of the Indian space industry and a tribute to Indian innovation and ingenuity.

He noted that the year also marked the 50th anniversary of the commencement of India’s space programme and acknowledged the presence of many stalwarts of the earlier space programmes, including Project Directors of space missions. “Given the string of successes since then, we often forget how challenging space technology is and what a relatively new field it continues to be.” …..

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