SRIHARIKOTA, India --- Indian space agency ISRO's rocket today successfully placed into orbit its 100th satellite "Cartosat 2", which will keep an eye across the border.
The Cartosat 2 satellite was the main payload of ISRO or Indian Space Research Organisation's Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) rocket that lifted off at 9.29 am from Sriharikota in Andhra Pradesh.
The PSLV, carrying India's 100th satellite along with 30 others, lifted off as scheduled, with a key component that led the previous launch failure working this time.
"We are extremely happy about the launch. This is a New Year gift to the country," said ISRO chief AS Kiran Kumar.
The surveillance satellite from the "Cartosat 2" series for earth observation will keep an eye on India's hostile neighbours. Its clone had been used in the 2016 surgical strikes when army commandos went across the Line of Control and targeted terror launching pads in Pakistani territory.
The 710kg satellite gives India huge surveillance capability, say scientists. Apart from monitoring the borders, it will also help in urban planning of cities.
The Cartosat is expected to help monitor and boost data services for coasts, road networks, water distribution, and land-use mapping.
The Cartosat 2 satellite will provide high resolution scene specific spot images. It carries panchromatic and multi-spectral cameras and is capable of delivering high resolution data.
The PSLV also carried satellites from Canada, Finland, France, Republic of Korea, UK and the United States.
The total weight of all the 31 satellites carried on-board PSLV-C40 is about 1,323kg.
ISRO's previous attempt to place Cartosat-2 into orbit in August failed as the PSLV plunged into the Bay of Bengal after lift-off. The heat shield did not separate in the final leg of the launch sequence and as a result, the satellite was stuck in the fourth stage of the rocket.