ISRO Pushes SARAL, Canadian Defense Satellite Launch Back to February

[Satellite TODAY 01-04-13] The Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) has once again delayed the joint launch of Indian-French satellite SARAL and several Canadian defense satellites. According to ISRO’s Jan. 4 announcement, the previously planned Jan. 12 launch date was moved to mid-February, due to a thermo-vacuum testing an issue that arose with the SARAL satellite, which is the primary payload of the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) C20 launch.

   The Canadian satellites are part of a secondary payload that includes the NEOSSat space telescope, which will search for near-Earth asteroids, and the dedicated military satellite Sapphire, which will upgrade the Canadian Department of National Defense’s (DND) surveillance capabilities.
   Also launching on the PSLV-C20 rocket are the Canadian built CanX-3b (TUGSAT-1) and CanX-3a (aka UniBRITE) nanosatellites, both of which were built by the University of Toronto Institute for Aerospace Studies Space Flight Laboratory.
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