BUSY YEAR AHEAD
The year 2015 is going to be a busy year for the Indian space agency. It will launch five foreign satellites apart from its own four navigation satellites and a communication satellite. The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) will also launch—from Sriharikoka in Andhra Pradesh - a heavy communication satellite, GSAT-15, with around 40 transponders-automatic receivers and transmitters for communication and broadcast of signals using the Ariane rocket of Arianespace.
“We will be completing the IRNSS (Indian Regional Satellite Navigation System) constellation by launching four more satellites and operationalise the navigation system. The geosynchronous satellite launch vehicle (GSLV) rocket is getting ready to launch GSAT-6 communication satellite,” ISRO chairman K. Radhakrishnan said in a telephone interview. He said astronomy satellite Astrosat will be launched in 2015. As to the commercial launches, India will launch five foreign satellites next year including three from Britain. India has also signed up contracts to launch two Indonesian satellites.
Radhakrishnan said that 2015 will see ISRO enhancing the space applications for the central and state governments. Queried whether ISRO was dispersing its resources looking at human space mission when the focus should be on developing GSLV rockets to carry heavy communication satellites, Radhakrishnan said, “ISRO’s projects are not mutually exclusive. The cryogenic engine for the heavy rocket is under development and will take two years for the rocket to be flight ready.”