22 May 2019
ISRO scripts history, launches spy satellite to combat terrorism
The Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) has launched a super surveillance satellite, RISAT-2B, from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre in Sriharikota.
The satellite, weighing 615kg, will be used for military surveillance as well as for application in fields ranging from agriculture, forestry and disaster management.
It will be staying in orbit for a period of five years.
Here's all about the mission.
About Radar Imaging Satellite-2B
The Radar Imaging Satellite-2B comes as the successor to Earth observation satellite RISAT-2.
It lifted off at 5:30 am in the morning on ISRO's Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV-C46) and was positioned into low Earth orbit 15 minutes later.
ISRO's chairman Sivan had previously called the mission a "very, very important one", noting that "it is an excellent satellite with hi-fi earth observation capabilities."
RISAT-2B can see through clouds
From its position in space, the satellite's synthetic aperture radar can keep an eye on Earth and Indian borders all the time, even when it's heavily clouded, Hindustan Times reported.
Sources from ISRO told PTI that the satellite would be used for military surveillance over the next five years, with agriculture, forestry, and disaster management support being its other applications.
Here's RISAT-2B in orbit
🇮🇳 #ISROMissions 🇮🇳#PSLVC46 successfully injects #RISAT2B into Low Earth Orbit.— ISRO (@isro) May 22, 2019
Here's the view of #RISAT2B separation captured by our onboard camera
Our updates will continue. pic.twitter.com/WUTBdNH2XJ
Border security to be improved with RISAT-2B
RISAT-2 had been working actively to monitor terrorist camps across the border, a job that will now be taken over by RISAT-2B.
This would make covert missions like Balakot easier and help the military prevent terrorist infiltrations.
Notably, the latest launch also marks the 354th launch for ISRO, which has delivered over 50 tonnes of payload into orbit.
Third launch for ISRO in 2019
The launch also marks ISRO's third launch for the year; previously, the organization had launched EMISAT and 29 international customer satellites on PSLV-C45, and Microsat-R and Kalamsat-V2 on PSLV-C44.