Space sector start-up Digantara launched its second satellite Pushan-Alpha as a rideshare onboard SpaceX's Transporter-6 mission that soared to the low earth orbit from Cape Canaveral in Florida, US.
The satellite will serve as a space weather testbed in the sun synchronous orbit for enhancing precision driven situational space awareness applications, Digantara Aerospace founder and CEO Anirudh Sharma told PTI.
Sharma said the Pushan-Alpha observations will help complement Digantara's ROBI (ROBust Integrating proton fluence meter) mission, the world's first commercial space-based space weather monitoring system onboard ISRO's PSLV-C53 launched on June 30 last year.
The Pushan-Alpha mission is named after the Hindu solar deity considered as the god of journeys and protector of travellers.
The Pushan-Alpha mission has a three-fold objective -- to extend radiation measurements to the sun synchronous orbit; to assess mid to high energy particle radiation from the South Atlantic Anomaly; and to investigate any co-relation of atmospheric drag and particle environment for enhanced orbit and debris modelling.
Bengaluru-based Digantara is developing end-to-end infrastructure to address the difficulties of space operations and space traffic management through its Space Mission Assurance Platform.
"With growing number of satellites being launched into space, space sustainability has been brought into serious question. Since the beginnings of space travel there has been a dearth of data associated with space situational awareness and we are looking to help supplement this decades old paucity of data with our indigenously built technology and infrastructure," Sharma said.
Transporter-6 was SpaceX's sixth dedicated smallest rideshare mission carrying 114 payloads, including orbital transfer vehicles carrying spacecraft to be deployed at a later time.