Artist’s rendition of SARAL satellite
Image credit: CNES
[Satellite TODAY 12-21-12] The launch of the Indian Space Research Organization’s (ISRO) SARAL satellite designed to study the ocean currents and sea surface heights has been delayed from December to February 2013 due to glitches, ISRO announced Dec. 21.
Problems arose during the thermo-vacuum testing of SARAL at the Bangalore ISRO Satellite Centre, where the entire satellite is built, leading to its postponement.
“We had technical problems in the satellite. Some problems were encountered during the thermo-vacuum testing… They have been solved,” a top ISRO official said in a statement. “The satellite has new payloads and new systems. When new payloads are used, technical issues will be there. We are resolving them,” said another ISRO engineer.
SATAL has two payloads from French space agency CNES—Argos-3 for data collection and Altikameter for measuring the height of the sea surface—and have been integrated into a satellite bus from India.