Last Updated: March 26, 2023, 09:18 IST
The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) launched India’s largest LVM3 rocket carrying 36 satellites, which lifted off from Satish Dhawan Space Centre in Sriharikota on Sunday morning at 9:00 am.
India’s heavies launch vehicle, Launch Vehicle Mark-III (LVM-III), will deploy 36 satellites of the UK-based Network Access Associated Ltd (OneWeb) to Low Earth Orbit (LEO) on Sunday.
During the countdown, which began at 8:30 am on Saturday, the rocket and satellite systems were checked, while fuel for the rocket was filled, as per news agency IANS.
LVM-III stands 43.5 metre tall and weighs 643 tonne. It will blast off at 9 a.m. from the second launch pad at the rocket port in Sriharikota in Andhra Pradesh carrying OneWeb’s final instalment of 36 Gen1 satellites weighing 5,805 kg, as per the IANS report.
It is a three stage rocket with the first stage fired with liquid fuel, the two strap on motors powered by solid fuel, the second by liquid fuel and the third is the cryogenic engine.
The upcoming rocket mission code named as LVM3-M3/OneWeb India-2 Mission by ISRO.
Just over 19 minutes after the rocket’s blast off, the process of satellite separation will begin. The separation of 36 satellites will happen in phases.
OneWeb is backed by India’s telecom major Bharti Group and with the successful launch of the satellites on March 26, the company will complete the global footprint of its Gen 1 constellation. It has 582 satellites now in orbit. On March 26 the total number is expected to go up to 618.
ISRO’s commercial arm, NewSpace India Ltd (NSIL) has signed a contract with OneWeb to launch 72 satellites in two phases for a launch fee of over Rs 1,000 crore, OneWeb Chairman Sunil Bharti Mittal had said last October.
You can watch the launch LIVE here.
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