the organisation launched four satellites Insat
3A, 3E, G Sat 2 and Resourcesat the major achievements
are the commissioning of the geo-synchronous satellite
launch vehicle (GSLV) and the successful testing of
the indigenous cryogenic engine's endurance.
year also saw Madhavan Nair becoming the ISRO chief;
secretary, department of space; and chairman, Space
Commission. While ISRO didn't launch any third party
satellites last year, it has started making a mark in
the global satellite launch industry with its two launch
ISRO signed an agreement with Israel Space Agency (ISA)
to cooperate for including Tel Aviv University Ultra
Violet Experiment (TAUVEX) on board G Sat-4 satellite
planned for launch by geo-synchronous satellite launch
vehicle (GSLV) during 2005.
to ISRO, TAUVEX is a telescope that will image the sky
in the ultra-violet (UV) spectrum. The data from the
telescope will help in solving astrophysical questions
related to star formation, history of galaxies and physics
of giant black holes. It could also help in guiding
other space telescopes towards selected interesting
objects in the sky.
scientific data from TAUVEX will be useful for the Indian
scientists to analyse the UV data and prepare themselves
to receive and analyse data from India's own astronomy
satellite, Astrosat, which is also planned to carry
an ultra-violet imaging telescope besides other instruments.
application of space systems for various developmental
tasks continued during the year. The tele-medicine network
using Insat was further expanded. Pilot projects were
initiated to prepare for the utilisation of Edusat,
an exclusive satellite for educational use, planned
for launch in 2004.
water prospect zone maps for seven states (Andhra Pradesh,
Madhya Pradesh, Karnataka, Chattisgarh, Jharkhand, Kerala
and Rajasthan) were completed and, based on 25,000 wells
drilled using these maps, a 90-per cent success rate
the revenue side Resourcesat-1 is expected to increase
the export revenues from selling remote-sensing data
by Rs 10 crore to Rs 30 crore per year. The global market
for remote-sensing images is around $120 million. ISRO,
through its commercial arm Antrix Corporation, is one
of the major players in this field and earns around
Rs 20 crore. Antrix targets a global market share of
50 per cent in this space.
company has a tie-up with the US-based Space Imaging
Corporation for marketing the remote-sensing data worldwide.
Leasing of transponders in the INSAT satellite series
is yet another revenue source for ISRO. The organisation,
leasing out 108 transponders out of 120 it owns, earns
Rs 150 crore per year.
major events for ISRO during 2003 were:
10 April 2003: The multipurpose satellite, Insat-3A,
was launched. It was the third satellite to be launched
in the Insat-3 series after Insat-3B and 3C. The 2,950-kg
Insat-3A is the heaviest satellite built by ISRO so
far. The communication payloads include 12 C-band, six
upper-extended C-band and six Ku-band transponders and
a satellite-aided search-and-rescue transponder. The
meteorological instruments include very high-resolution
radiometer, charge-coupled device camera and meteorological
data relay transponder.
May 2003: The second developmental test flight of
India's GSLV was successfully carried from Satish Dhawan
Space Centre SHAR, Sriharikota. With this second successive
test, GSLV was commissioned into service for launching
2,000-kg class of satellites into geo-synchronous transfer
orbit. GSAT-2, the satellite launched by GSLV, is an
experimental communication satellite carrying four C-band
transponders, two Ku-band transponders and a mobile
satellite service transponder besides four scientific
August 2003: Vajpayee announced, in his Independence
Day address, that India will undertake Chandrayaan-1,
a scientific mission to moon. Chandrayaan-1 envisages
placing a 525-kg spacecraft in the 100-km polar orbit
of the moon. ISRO's polar satellite launch vehicle,
PSLV, will launch the spacecraft. Chandrayaan-1 is expected
to be the forerunner for more ambitious planetary missions
in the years to come.
September 2003: G Madhavan Nair, director, Vikram
Sarabhai Space Centre, took over as chairman, ISRO;
secretary, department of space; and chairman, Space
Commission. He took over from Dr K Kasturirangan, who
was nominated as member, Rajya Sabha.
September 2003: Insat-3E, the fourth satellite in
the Insat-3 series, was launched successfully. The 2,775-kg
communication satellite carries 24 C-band transponders
and 12 upper extended C-band transponders.
October 2003: In its eighth flight conducted ISRO's
polar satellite launch vehicle, PSLV-C5, successfully
launched the Indian remote sensing satellite, Resourcesat-1,
precisely into the intended 820 km polar orbit. Resourcesat-1
is the most advanced remote sensing satellite built
by ISRO so far. It carries a high-resolution linear
imaging self-scanner (LISS-4) with 5.8-metre spatial
resolution, LISS-3, with a spatial resolution of 23.5
metre and an advanced wide field sensor with spatial
resolution of 56 metre.
December 2003: The indigenous cryogenic engine successfully
undergoes endurance test. The engine, along with its
two steering engines as used in the actual flight, was
tested for 1,000 seconds while
it is required to operate for 720 seconds. The test
marked an important milestone in the development of
the indigenous cryogenic stage for GSLV.