The maiden flight of a new Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) rocket carrying two satellites onboard has run into trouble after the rocket experienced a data loss in the final phase of the flight.
ISRO scientists and engineers are presently trying to understand if the 120 tonne Small Satellite Launch Vehicle (SSLV) was able to inject the two satellites onboard into a stable orbit.
Until this becomes clear, the mission cannot be declared a success.
“SSLV-D1 performed as expected at all stages. In the terminal phase of the mission, some data loss is occurring. We are analysing the data to conclude the final outcome of the mission with respect to achieving a stable orbit,” ISRO chairman S Somanath said.
The SSLV is carrying Earth Observation Satellite -02 and a co-passenger satellite AzaadiSAT — developed by the student team of ‘Space Kidz India‘, an aerospace organisation that aims to create government school students with basic understanding and knowledge of space.
The “AzaadiSAT” comprises 75 payloads built by 750 school students to mark the 75th Anniversary of Independence. The girl students who designed the satellite also witnessed the SSLV-D1 launch at the spaceport in Sriharikota.
SSLV-D1/EOS-02 Mission: Maiden flight of SSLV is completed. All stages performed as expected. Data loss is observed during the terminal stage. It is being analysed. Will be updated soon.
– ISRO (@isro) August 7, 2022
“Three groups from our school have participated in this SSLV launch. I am very glad that we got this opportunity. We really worked hard on it and today we will witness the launch of the AzaadiSAT satellite,” Shreya, a student from Telangana, was quoted as saying by news agency ANI.
The SSLV is 34m tall, about 10m less than the PSLV and it has a vehicle diameter of two metres as compared to 2.8 metres of PSLV.
This was the maiden launch of SSLV by the space agency after the successful mission launches through its trusted workhorse Polar Satellite Launch Vehicles (PSLV), Geosynchronous Launch Vehicle (GSLV).
With inputs from agencies