In its thirty-seventh flight, PSLV-C35, ISRO's polar satellite launch vehicle (PSLV) successfully launched the 371-kg SCATSAT-1 satellite along with seven co-passenger satellites on September 26, 2016 from Satish Dhawan Space Centre, Sriharikota. This is the thirty-sixth consecutively successful mission of PSLV.
The total weight of all the eight satellites carried onboard PSLV-C35 was 675 kg. PSLV-C35 is the first PSLV mission to launch satellites carried onboard into two different orbits. This PSLV mission was the longest of the PSLV missions conducted till date and was completed in 2 hours, 15 minutes, and 33 seconds after lift-off.
After the flight, the vehicle achieved a polar Sun Synchronous Orbit of 724 km inclined at an angle of 98.1 degree to the equator (very close to the intended orbit) and later the primary satellite SCATSAT-1 was separated from the PSLV fourth stage. After separation, the two solar arrays of SCATSAT-1 satellite were deployed automatically and ISRO's telemetry, tracking, and command network (ISTRAC) at Bangalore took over the control of the satellite. In the coming days, the satellite will be brought to its final operational configuration following which it will begin to provide weather-related services using its scatterometer payload.
The data sent by SCATSAT-1 satellite will help provide weather forecasting services to user communities through generation of wind-vector products as well as cyclone detection and tracking. After the successful separation of SCATSAT-1, the PSLV-C35 mission continued. Still carrying the seven co-passenger satellites, the fourth stage of PSLV coasted over the South Polar Region and then started ascending toward the Northern hemisphere. A safe distance between the orbiting SCATSAT-1 and PSLV-C35 fourth stage was maintained by suitably maneuvering the stage.
The Dual Launch Adapter was successfully separated from the PSLV-C35 fourth stage. Thirty seconds after this event, ALSAT-1N was the first co-passenger satellite to be separated successfully. Following this, the NLS-19, PRATHAM, PISAT, ALSAT-1B, ALSAT-2B, and Pathfinder-1 were separated from the PSLV fourth stage in a predetermined sequence, thereby successfully completing PSLV-C35 mission.
Of the seven co-passenger satellites carried by PSLV-C35, two - PRATHAM weighing 10 kg and PISAT weighing 5.25 kg - are university/academic institute satellites and were built with the involvement of students from IIT-Bombay and PES University, Bangalore and its consortium, respectively. The remaining five co-passenger satellites were international customer satellites from Algeria (three - ALSAT-1B, ALSAT-2B and ALSAT-1N), Canada (one - NLS-19), and the United States (one - Pathfinder-1).
With this launch, the PSLV's capability to launch satellites into two different orbits has been successfully demonstrated. The total number of satellites launched by India's workhorse launch vehicle PSLV has now reached 121, of which 42 are Indian and the remaining 79 are from abroad.