India has placed itself into space history.
In one launch, India launched 10 satellites into orbits that are 600 km away from earth. The combined payload was 820 kg.
The last time this was attempted was by the Russians who launched 13 satellites that weighed 295 kg. Of course, NASA has not been able to do this yet, despite its awesome budget.
India’s Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) left Sriharikota at 9.23 am on Monday (April 28, 2008).
Of the 10 satellites, two are from India — the 695-kg Cartosat-2a and the 87-kg Indian Mini Satellite-1 (IMS-1) — while the remaining eight are nano satellites from Canada, Japan, Denmark, Germany and the Netherlands. The total weight of these nano satellites, six of which were clustered together with the collective name NLS-4, is about 50 kg.
Their primary role is scientific research for various laboratories and universities. Cartosat-2a, the 13th in the Indian remote-sensing satellite series, will be used for mapping and help in urban and rural infrastructure development.
And seriously, this feat could not have been attempted by the Europeans, who are so afraid of the number 13. It also in some way puts paid to that superstition of the unlucky life of this number! 🙂
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