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PSLV blasts off with GSAT-12 satellite - Sathish - 07-15-2011

Chennai: Indian Space Research Organisation’s reliable Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle-C17successfully blasted off at 4.48 pm on Friday from the Sriharikota launch pad carrying communication GSAT-12.

PSLV-C17 would be placing the GSAT-12 satellite into a sub-Geosynchronous Transfer Orbit of 284 km perigee and an apogee of 21,000 km shortly after it blasted off at 4.48 pm.

GSAT-12 communication satellite - weighing 1410 kg - has 12 Ext-C Band transponders aimed to augment the communication services in the country.

The satellite is expected to serve the Very Small Aperture Terminal (V-SAT) sector. VSATs are used to transmit data like point of sale transactions or to provide satellite internet access.

It will also be useful for various communication services like tele-education, tele-medicine and for village resource centres.

The satellite will augment transponder capacity of Indian National Satellite (Insat) system which presently comprises of eight satellites - Insat-2E, Insat-3A, Insat-3C, Insat-3E, Insat-4A, Insat-4B, Insat-4CR and GSAT-8 providing 175 transponders in the S, C, extend C and Ku bands.

After that, the propellant and helium gas chambers will have to be pressurised, a process that would take another couple of hours.

On Thursday the rocket's fourth stage/engine was fuelled with liquid propellants. The gas and propellant chambers were pressurised.

Costing around Rs 90 crore, the PSLV-C17 rocket standing 44 metre tall and weighing around 320 tonne is a four stage rocket powered by solid and liquid propellants alternatively.

The first and third stages are fired by a solid propellant and the second and fourth stages by a liquid propellant.

The solid fuel stages are cast ready while the liquid propellant will be filled hours before the blast-off.

ISRO used its third PSLV rocket variant - PSLV-XL - with longer strap-on motors with higher fuel capacity.

The other two rocket variants are the PSLV standard version with 11.3 metre six strap-on motors and the PSLV Core Alone (CA) rocket without the six strap-on motors.

The rocket had 13.5 metre long strap-on motors to carry 12 tonnes of solid fuel than the normal strap-on motors measuring 11.3 metre with 9 tonne fuel capacity.

This was the second time that ISRO launched a rocket with this specification. The earlier one was for the Chandrayaan moon mission.

This was also the second time ISRO used a PSLV rocket for launching a satellite to be finally placed in geostationary orbit. The first satellite was Kalpana-1 (originally named as Metsat), a meteorological satellite launched in 2002.

The GSAT-12 satellite will be co-located with Inst-2E and Insat-4A satellites and will have a life of eight years.

Source: Zee News