Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) chairman Dr. K Sivan, Chairman said that the national space agency is working on launching India’s GISAT-1, an Earth Observation satellite, in the month of August.
This will be the state-run space agency’s second launch of 2021, following the commercial launch of Brazilian Amazonia-1 on a PSLV rocket in February.
The GSLV Mk2 rocket, India’s medium-lift capability rocket, will launch GISAT-1.
Talking about rumours that the launch will take place at 5:43 a.m. on August 12, Dr. Sivan told WION that the timing was more of an internal deadline than an official launch date. He also stated that preparations for the launch have begun and are under progress, as well as confirming that the official launch date and time would be announced later.
GISAT-1, according to ISRO, will give near real-time imaging of broad areas of interest at frequent intervals, as well as spectral signatures for agriculture, forestry, mineralogy, disaster warning, cloud characteristics, snow and glaciers, and oceanography.
The launch of GISAT was originally scheduled for March 2020, but it was postponed due to technical issues. Following the pandemic-related setbacks, the launch was rescheduled for March 2021, but it was further postponed due to satellite technical problems.
ISRO(Indian Space Research Organisation) paused its launch activity during the second wave of the pandemic in India, but the agency assisted to the COVID-19 fight by increasing liquid oxygen production (for hospitals), repurposing its storage tanks for oxygen, and producing low-cost ventilators, among other things.
Since the manufacturing and fabrication of rocket parts, fuel, and components for ISRO is largely carried out by Indian industry, the space agency faced a few delays in its activities when the virus started spreading in early 2020, imposing travel restrictions and lockdowns in the country. However, with the ease up in the restrictions and things starting to come under control again, industries have resumed operations.