Antrix gearing to launch 68 small satellites in early 2017

| Updated on: Jan 17, 2018

BL31_STATES_ANTRIX__ISRO

Antrix, the commercial arm of Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), is planning to send into orbit 68 small satellites from countries across the world early next year.

“These 68 small satellites will be riding on our workhorse Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) in the next six months,” said S Rakesh, chairman and managing director of Antrix, while announcing the 5th edition of Bengaluru Space Expo (BSX-2016).

“Antrix has been attracting the world’s attention for low-cost and flawless launch capabilities of satellites,” he added.

Space Expo

BSX-2016, which is planned in collaboration with CII from September 1 to 3, is expected to provide an opportunity for networking with global operators and suppliers in space industry.

Rakesh said ISRO had created a record with its 36th flight of PSLV-C34 in July this year when it successfully launched the 727.5 kg Cartosat-2 series satellite along with 19 co-passenger satellites from its spaceport in Sriharikota. It was the 35th consecutively successful mission of PSLV. The total weight of all the 20 satellites carried onboard PSLV-C34 was 1,288 kg.

“PSLV is very commercially competitive and it is the reason it has attracted interest among many countries and organisations which wanted their own satellites in the space,” he added.

Govt subsidy

The commercial arm of ISRO had already earned good sum in foreign exchange through these launches of foreign satellites.

To a question over the US Congress’ reservations over Indian space programmes and Antrix inviting commercial flights being heavily subsidised, Rakesh said Antrix is not bothered.

“Every Indian space programme is subsidised by the government. It is not that US space launches or those from other (space faring) countries are not subsidised (by those governments).”

“We need not answer all those questions. We are doing our programmes and competing with the world. We will try to be more competitive and that will provide the answer,” he added.

Published on August 30, 2016
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