ISRO's first geo imaging satellite can scan India every 30 minutes

The Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle (GSLV) F-10 rocket preparing for launch at the Satish Dhawan Space Center in SriharikotaISRO

  • The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) has plans to launch its very first geo imaging satellite (GISAT 1) on March 5.
  • The satellite has five multispectral cameras capable of scanning the entire Indian subcontinent every 30 minutes.
  • However, the cameras are not capable of peering past clouds or other obstacles in the sky.
A new first for the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) is set to take place on March 5. Its plans to launch its very first Geo Imaging Satellite (GISAT 1) designed to enhance real-time observations of India.

The satellite was originally scheduled to launch in 2017 aboard the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV). However, the project was pushed back due to numerous delays.

Now, GISAT 1 will be launched aboard India’s strongest rocket — the ‘Bahubali’ Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle (GSLV) — from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre (SDSC) SHAR in Sriharikota at 5:43 pm.

Features of the GISAT 1
The aim of the GISAT 1 is to help monitor natural hazards using the 4-meter wide payload’s five multispectral cameras.

The cameras are capable of scanning the entire country every 30 minutes at a spatial resolution of 50 meters. However, if a specific area has been selected, the satellite can generate a field image every five minutes.

GISAT 1 preparing for launchISRO

The main camera — 700mm Ritchey-Chretien telescope — is based on the design of the Cartosat 2 satellite. The remaining four cameras capture high-resolution multi-spectral and hyper-spectral images.

However, unlike previous observation satellites, the cameras aren’t equipped to peer through the cloud cover. This means that they need a cloud-free sky in order to operate efficiently.


GISAT 1 preparing for launchISRO

According to ISRO, the GISAT 1’s cameras are going to, “tap new functionalities hitherto not covered by existing LEO and GEO missions like fast revisit capabilities, real-time monitoring, high resolution multispectral and hyperspectral imaging — all on a single, agile, jitter-free platform.”

The GISAT 1 weighs around 2227 kilos and will be placed in geostationary orbit by the GSLV F-10 at an altitude of 35,768 kilometres.

After the successful launch of GISAT 1, ISRO plans to launch its twin satellite — the GISAT 2, which have the same specifications — in the near future.

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