India launches six Singapore satellites onboard PSLV-C29

India launches six Singapore satellites onboard PSLV-C29
India today successfully put six Singapore satellites into orbit after a perfect launch of its polar rocket in its landmark 50th space mission from here that also gave a boost to its space business.

The Singaporean satellites that would help the city-state gather information on disaster monitoring and urban planning were launched by ISRO's workhorse Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle(PSLV-C29) coinciding with the 50th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Singapore and India this year.

Indian Space Research Organisation(ISRO) also scored a splendid hat-trick of exclusive commercial launches this year after the July and September missions when it launched 11 satellites, including those of United States and United Kingdom.

In a textbook launch, PSLV C-29 blasted off from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre (SDSC) here, about 110 km from Chennai, at 6 pm and released the six satellites one by one into a 550 km circular orbit, completing the exercise about 21 minutes later.

After the rocket soared into clear evening sky at the end of the 59-hour countdown, the four stages of PSLV performed as programmed, releasing the satellites in orbit much to the jubilation of ISRO scientists at the mission control centre.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi congratulated ISRO scientists for the successful launch, saying it was a "momentous feat". "Our scientists at @isro accomplish another momentous feat. Congrats to them on PSLV-C29 successfully launching 6 Singapore satellites," he tweeted.

On its 50th launch from here, ISRO has succesfully launched six satellites of Singapore which was celebrating its 50 years of independence, a beaming ISRO Chairman A S Kiran Kumar said in his address from the mission control room.

"We intend to carry on with our activities including (launch of) communication and observation satellites in 2016 with greater vigour... we have lot more to achieve," he said.
This was the 32nd flight for the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) which once again proved its reliability as the workhorse rocket for ISRO, recording its 31st consecutive success.

Today's mission was the golden jubilee launch for ISRO from Sriharikota, since the maiden launch in August 1979, an official of the space agency said. With this, the Antrix Corporation, the commercial arm of ISRO, has provided launch services on-board the PSLV for 57 customer satellites from 20 countries.

This year alone ISRO has launched a total of 17 satellites of foreign countries. In the previous two missions, ISRO launched five satellites for customers from United Kingdom onboard PSLV-C28 in July and four satellites belonging to the US and one each from Canada and Indonesia onboard PSLV C30 in September.

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