Reaching for The Sky: ISRO’s Commercial Arm to Launch Its Second Mission on June 30

Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO)’s commercial arm NewSpace India Ltd (NSIL) is all set for its second mission that will place three foreign satellites into orbit.

The space agency’s workhorse PSLV will execute the mission on June 30 from the second launch pad at Satish Dhawan Space Centre, Sriharikota. The launch is scheduled at 6 pm, and the 25-hour countdown will begin at 5 pm on June 29.

“PSLV-C53 is the second dedicated commercial mission of NewSpace India Limited (NSIL). It is designed to orbit DS-EO satellite along with two other co-passenger satellites from ST Electronics, Singapore,” announced the agency on Wednesday.

This will be the 55th mission of PSLV and 15th mission using the PSLV-Core Alone version.

The four-stage, 44.4 m tall rocket weighing 228.433 t will carry three satellites – a 365 kg DS-EO satellite with 0.5 m resolution imaging capability and a 155 kg NeuSAR – both built by Starec Initiative, Republic of Korea.

The DS-EO satellite. Image/News18

NeuSAR is Singapore’s first small commercial satellite carrying a SAR payload, which is capable of providing images in day and night and under all weather conditions.

The third satellite is a 2.8 kg Scoob-1 of Nanyang Technological University (NTU), Singapore. It is the first satellite in the Student Satellite Series (S3-I), a hands-on student training programme from the Satellite Research Centre (SaRC) at Singapore’s NTU School of Electrical and Electronic Engineering.

ISRO has previously launched nine customer satellites of Israel, Italy, Japan and USA under a commercial arrangement with NewSpace India Limited (NSIL).

The agency also shared that the mission will have the PSLV Orbital Experimental Module (POEM) to conduct in-orbit scientific experiments using the spent PS4 stage as an orbital platform subsequent to the separation of the satellites.

The fourth and final stage of the rocket normally turns into debris after ejecting a satellite, but ISRO will use it as an innovative stabilised platform to conduct experiments. It will derive the power from the solar panels mounted around the PS4 tank and a Li-Ion battery. POEM will carry six payloads including two from Indian space start-ups M/s Digantara and M/s Dhruva Aerospace, enabled through IN-SPACe and NSIL.

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