The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) will launch the Brazilian satellite Amazonia-1 from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre in Sriharikota in Andhra Pradesh on Sunday. The countdown for the launch commenced on Saturday.
This will be ISRO's first mission of the year 2021. It is scheduled to take place at 10.24 am today, according to ISRO.
Along with Amazonia-1, 18 other co-passenger satellites will also be onboard the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV-C51). According to the last update from ISRO about today's launch, the filling of oxidizer for the second stage of the PSLV rocket has been completed.
PSLV-C51/Amazonia-1 is the first dedicated commercial mission of NewSpace India Limited (NSIL), a Government of India company under the Department of Space. The NSIL is undertaking this mission under a commercial arrangement with US-based launch services and mission management provider Spaceflight Inc.
The 637-kg Amazonia-1 is the optical earth observation satellite of the National Institute for Space Research (INPE), the research unit of Brazil's ministry of science. This satellite would further strengthen the existing structure by providing remote sensing data to users for monitoring deforestation in the Amazon region and analysis of diversified agriculture across the Brazilian territory.
The 18 co-passenger satellites are Satish Dhawan Sat (SDSAT) from Chennai-based Space Kidz India (SKI) and the UNITYSat which is a the combination of three satellites, designed and built as a joint development initiative by Jeppiaar Institute of Technology, Sriperumbudur, (JITsat), G H. Raisoni College of Engineering, Nagpur (GHRCESat) and Sri Shakthi Institute of Engineering and Technology, Coimbatore (Sri Shakthi Sat). These satellites are intended for providing Radio relay services, a statement released by ISRO said.
After this, the ISRO will gear up to launch its geo imaging satellite GISAT-1. The launch of GISAT-1 onboard GSLV-F10 rocket was originally planned for March five last year, but was postponed a day before the blast-off due to technical reasons.
According to ISRO, GISAT-1 will facilitate near real-time observation of the Indian sub-continent, under cloud-free condition, at frequent intervals.