On-board camera replay of PSLV’s deployment of 31 smallsats

Video credit: ISRO

India’s Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle released 31 satellites into two different orbits Thursday, and on-board cameras captured dazzling views of the smallsats flying away from the rocket’s upper stage high above Earth.

The views begin with the blastoff of the 144-foot-tall (44.4-meter) Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle from India’s east coast at 0427:30 GMT Thursday (11:27:30 p.m. EST Wednesday), then separation of the rocket’s solid-fueled first stage and payload shroud.

Liftoff occurred at 9:57 a.m. Indian time.

The video then jumps to the deployment of the Indian HysIS hyperspectral imaging spacecraft, the mission’s primary passenger, at an altitude of roughly 395 miles (636 kilometers).

After two restarts by the PSLV’s fourth stage, the rocket released 30 additional satellites, including 23 from commercial companies based in the United States: Planet, Spire Global, Spaceflight Industries, Harris Corp. and GeoOptics. CubeSats from Dutch, Canadian, Australian, Malaysian, Finnish, Spanish and Colombian customers were also deployed in orbit around 313 miles (504 kilometers) above Earth.

The final satellite to separate from the rocket was the BlackSky Global 1 Earth observation payload, a 123-pound (56-kilogram) microsatellite built by Spaceflight Industries near Seattle.

Read our full story for details on the mission.

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