Cartosat-1, Hamsat in orbit; fillip to mapping & Ham radio

MUMBAI: The Indian Space Research Organisation (Isro) has successfully launched India's heaviest remote sensing satellite Cartosat-1 and lightweight Hamsat from the newly set up Second Launch Pad at the Satish Dhawan Space Centre, Sriharikota, Andhra Pradesh.


The Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) soared into the sky at 10.14 am and placed the satellites in the 618 km polar Sun Synchronous Orbit (SSO) at 10.32 am. Both the satellites have been placed in polar Sun Synchronous Orbit (SSO) at an altitude of 632 x 621 km with an inclination of 97.8 deg with respect to the equator. The solar panels of Cartosat-1 were deployed soon after its injection into orbit.

The 1560 kg Cartosat will be used for mapping applications while the 42.5 kg Hamsat, a microsatellite, will help expand bandwidth to help amateur radio operators around the world.


Intended for cartographic applications, Cartosat-1 carries two panchromatic cameras that take black-and-white stereoscopic pictures in the visible region of the electromagnetic spectrum. The imageries will have a spatial resolution of 2.5 metre and cover a swath of 30 km. The imageries will be useful for generating digital elevation maps for urban and rural development, land and water resources management, disaster assessment, relief planning and management and environmental impact assessment. Cartosat-1 also carries a Solid State Recorder with a capacity of 120 Giga Bits to store the images taken by its cameras.

Hamsat will meet the long felt need of the Amateur Radio Operators in the South Asian region who possess the required equipment and operate in the UHF/VHF band based Satellite Radio Communication. One of the transponders of Hamsat has been developed indigenously involving Indian amateurs, with the expertise of Isro and the experience of Amsat-India. The second transponder has been developed by a Dutch amateur radio operator and graduate engineering student at Higher Technical Institute, Venlo, Netherlands.

Hamsat is India's contribution to the international community of Amateur Radio Operators. This effort is also meant to bring Isro's Satellite services within the reach of the common man and popularise Space Technology among the masses.

With the successful launch of Cartosat-1 and Hamsat today, PSLV has reiterated its reliability and versatility for launching satellites of different weight classes precisely into specified orbits, says an Isro statement.

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