India launches military satellite Microsat-R

India successfully launched Microsat-R, a military satellite on board its Polar rocket PSLV C44, from the spaceport in Sriharikota on Thursday, in the first mission for the ISRO in 2019.

The Indian Space Research Organisation's (ISRO) workhorse Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) blasted off from the first launchpad of the Satish Dhawan Space Centre at 11.37 pm at the end of a 28-hour countdown.

In a textbook launch, the 44-metre tall, four-stage PSLV-C44 soared into the clear and starry night sky majestically and injected the 740-kg Microsat-R into orbit precisely 13 minutes and 30 seconds later.

The fourth stage of the rocket with co-passenger 'Kalamsat', a students' payload, would now be moved to a higher circular orbit, around 450 kms from earth, so as to establish an orbital platform for carrying out experiments.

The ISRO said it would take about 90 minutes for the fourth stage to reach the desired orbit.

Microsat-R, an imaging satellite, is meant for military purposes.

Built at a cost of around Rs 12 lakh, the 'Kalamsat' is an experimental satellite for studying the communication system of nano satellites, which can be useful in many fields, predominantly disaster management.

The PSLV C44 is the first launch for the country's space agency in 2019.

(with news agency inputs)