ISRO's PSLV-C46 mission successfully launches Indian radar imaging satellite RISAT-2B into 'perfect' orbit

ISRO's PSLV carried the RISAT-2B satellite to orbit in the shortest time of any Indian rocket in the past.

The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) successfully launched the PSLV's 48th mission – the launch of the RISAT-2B earth observation satellite – on 22 May 2019. The PSLV-Core Alone rocket — the lightest among ISRO's launch vehicles — carried RISAT-2B in the shortest span of time that any Indian satellite has in the past – a record for ISRO.

After a perfect launch and stellar performances by all four stages of the rocket, the payload was released into its intended circular orbit at a 557 kilometer-altitude, at an inclination of 37-degrees. RISAT-2B was released into orbit at around 15 minutes 30 seconds into the launch.

ISROs PSLV-C46 mission successfully launches Indian radar imaging satellite RISAT-2B into perfect orbit

RISAT-2B separating from the payload fairing of the PSLV-C46 rocket. Image: DD National/ISRO

RISAT-2B is a powerful new radar earth observation satellite that is due to take over from RISAT-1. Both are part of a series of satellites that can observe weather conditions on Earth using radar imagery irrespective of day- or nighttime, or weather conditions on the ground. RISAT-2 – the first satellite in the series before RISAT-2B – was the first satellite in the series to have also had surveillance capabilities. RISAT-1 was launched later, to become India’s first all-weather radar imaging satellite.

The PSLV-C46 mission is ISRO's 48 PSLV launch, and the 14th PSLV Core-Alone (CA) mission.

Also read: ISRO's Chandrayaan-2 to launch in July, make India's first Moon landing in September

The PSLV-C46 rocket lifting off from Sriharikota with RISAT-2B. Image: ISRO

The upcoming mission is the most challenging one ISRO has ever undertaken, Chairman of ISRO Dr K Sivan told members of ISRO and press in the post-launch briefing, speaking of the Chandrayaan-2 mission, scheduled for launch in July this year.

Also read: Chandrayaan-2 to carry a total of 13 payloads including one from NASA, confirms ISRO

"But I'm certain that ISRO will be ready to take on the big challenge and see the mission till its success," he added.

For the second successive launch attempt, ISRO made provisions for the general public to view the launch from a newly-built viewing gallery at the Satish Dhawan Space Centre.

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