Jul 12, 2010
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PSLV-C15 is the seventeenth flight of ISRO's versatile Polar Satellite Launch
Vehicle, PSLV. In this flight, PSLV placed the 694 kg CARTOSAT-2B in a 630 km polar
Sun Synchronous Orbit (SSO). PSLV was initially designed for launching 900 kg Indian
Remote Sensing Satellites into a 900 km polar SSO.
Since its first launch in 1993, the PSLV has been successively
improved to attain its present capability of launching 1750 kg into an 630 km polar
SSO. The major changes made in PSLV since its first launch include the increase in
the propellant loading of the first stage solid propellant motor as
well as the strap-ons and the second and fourth liquid propellant stages,
improvement in the performance of the third stage motor by optimising motor case and
enhanced propellant loading and employing a carbon composite payload adopter.
PSLV has also been made a more versatile vehicle for launching multiple satellites
in polar SSOs as well as for launching satellites into Geosynchronous Transfer Orbit
(GTO) and Low Earth Orbit (LEO). With fifteen consecutively successful
launches, PSLV has emerged as a workhorse launch vehicle of ISRO and is offered for
launching satellites of other space agencies also. Besides launching 17 Indian
satellites, PSLV has launched 22 foreign satellites as well during 1994-2009 period
into polar Sun Synchronous, Geosynchronous Transfer Highly Elliptical and Low Earth
Orbits and has
repeatedly proved its reliability and versatility.
For PSLV-C15 mission, the 'Core Alone' version of PSLV has been chosen based on the
weight of the payload and the orbit to which it
is to be placed. The 44 metre tall 'Core Alone' version of PSLV weighs 230 tonne at
lift-off. Six solid 'strap-on motors', clustered
around the first stage of PSLV 'standard version' to enhance its thrust, are absent in
version. PSLV-C15 is the sixth flight of the 'Core Alone' version of PSLV.