THE Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) is getting back into launch activity fully at Sriharikota spaceport with the planned orbiting of geo imaging satellite GISAT-1 on board GSLV-F10 rocket on August 12. It’s going to be only the second launch of the Bengaluru-headquartered space agency in the COVID-19-hit 2021. ISRO successfully launched PSLV-C51 mission on February 28 with Brazil’s earth observation satellite Amazonia-1 and 18 co-passengers, including some built by students, on board. The 2,268-kg GISAT-1 was originally slated to be launched from Sriharikota in Andhra Pradesh’s Nellore district, about 100 kms north of Chennai, on March 5 last year but was postponed a day before the blast-off due to technical reasons.
Thereafter the launch was delayed due to lockdown which affected normal work. It was scheduled for March 28 this year but a “minor issue” with the satellite forced its postponement. The launch was later expected in April and then in May but the campaign could not be taken up due to lockdown triggered by the second wave of the pandemic.