Sat. Apr 20th, 2024

ISRO to launch India’s latest weather satellite tomorrow, nicknamed “Naughty Boy.”

ISRO to launch India's latest weather satellite tomorrow, nicknamed "Naughty Boy."ISRO to launch India's latest weather satellite tomorrow, nicknamed "Naughty Boy."

ISRO: The Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle is planned to go off with a meteorological satellite from Sriharikota in Andhra Pradesh on Saturday at 5.35 p.m.

India will use a rocket known as the “Naughty Boy” of the Indian space agency to launch its newest weather satellite on Saturday.

The Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle (GSLV), which is scheduled to launch with the INSAT-3DS satellite from Sriharikota in Andhra Pradesh at 5.35 p.m. on Saturday, was dubbed a “naughty boy” by a former chairman of the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) because the rocket has failed in six of its 15 flights, resulting in a 40% failure rate. The GSLV’s most recent launch, on May 29, 2023, was successful, although the previous one, on August 12, 2021, failed.

In comparison, the GSLV’s bigger cousin, the Launch Vehicle Mark-3, often known as the ‘Bahubali rocket’, has completed seven flights with a perfect record. ISRO’s workhorse rocket, the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV), too has an impressive 95% success rate, with only three failures in 60 missions. The GSLV is a three-stage rocket that is 51.7 meters long – almost one-quarter the length of the Statue of Unity, which stands 182 metres tall – and has a liftoff mass of 420 tons. The rocket has an India-made cryogenic engine, which ISRO intends to retire after a few more missions.

India’s weather and climate monitoring services would benefit greatly from the launch of a very special and much-needed satellite on Saturday. It is a dedicated meteorological satellite of the third generation, upgraded and named INSAT-3DS. At a construction cost of approximately ₹ 480 crore, the satellite weighs 2,274 kg. ISRO indicated that the Ministry of Earth Sciences is providing all of the funding. The Department of Space is only allowed to launch missions that have the full approval and endorsement of user agencies under Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Enhanced forecasts, potentially saving lives.

ISRO officials stated that the latest weather monitoring satellite is engineered to provide improved meteorological observations and monitor both land and ocean surfaces for enhanced weather forecasting and disaster alerting. India utilizes these aerial assets to bolster its meteorological office’s ability to deliver increasingly precise forecasts, frequently leading to life-saving outcomes.

Dr. M. Ravichandran, Secretary of the Ministry of Earth Sciences and an accomplished expert in the atmosphere and ocean science emphasized the pivotal role of Indian weather satellites, dubbing them as game-changers. He underscored how these satellites act as invaluable “eyes in the sky,” enabling India to forecast cyclones with remarkable precision.

In the 1970s, cyclones originating in the Bay of Bengal resulted in the tragic loss of approximately 300,000 lives. However, this was before the introduction of Indian weather satellites. Today, with India employing its dedicated constellation of satellites, cyclone forecasts have become remarkably precise. As a result, the death toll has drastically reduced to double digits or, in some cases, even zero. India currently operates three weather satellites: INSAT-3D, INSAT-3DR, and OceanSat. Dr. Ashim Kumar Mitra, project head of the Satellite Meteorology Division, India Meteorological Department (IMD), stated, “INSAT-3D is nearing the end of its operational life after serving since 2013, so a replacement satellite was required.”

ISRO to launch India’s latest weather satellite tomorrow, nicknamed “Naughty Boy.”

Dr Mitra explained how weather satellites provide data for forecasts, saying, “Satellites measure the radiance coming from the Earth’s surface and cloud tops.” By taking such observations at appropriate wavelengths and using physical and statistical methodologies, a wide range of weather monitoring and forecasting products can be computed. Furthermore, satellite meteorological data on a worldwide scale are critical inputs for Numerical Weather Prediction (NWP) models as beginning conditions.” He elaborated, stating that in a tropical country like India, where high-impact convective events are frequent, it is crucial to have high-quality, densely distributed observations both spatially and temporally.

The new satellite is equipped with a search-and-rescue transponder, designed to detect distress signals from specialized equipment commonly carried by ships and even trekkers. This capability is instrumental in locating individuals who may be lost or in distress in remote areas. Given India’s status as a tropical country with notable atmospheric fluctuations, weather satellites play a crucial role as essential tools for the IMD. Mr. Ravichandran stressed that the investments made in Indian weather satellites have yielded significant returns, surpassing expectations.

Now, India must await to ascertain whether ISRO’s “naughty boy” has been effectively disciplined into compliance or if it persists in its unruly behavior.

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