In its second operational flight, LVM3 launch vehicle placed 36 satellites of OneWeb to their intended orbits taking off at 0007 Hrs. on 23 October, from the second launch pad at Satish Dhawan Space Centre, Sriharikota, Andhra Pradesh.
This was the fifth flight of LVM3. This was a dedicated commercial mission for a foreign customer through NSIL. A total of 36 OneWeb Gen-1 satellites of about 150 kg each totaling about 5,796 kg were launched to a circular low-earth orbit of about 601 km with an 87.4º inclination.
The separation of satellites involved a unique manoeuvre of the cryogenic stage to orientation and re-orientation covering 9 phases spanning 75 minutes.
OneWeb confirmed the acquisition of signals from the satellites.
OneWeb Gen-1 satellites utilise a bent-pipe technology approach to offer communication in Ku-band and Ku-bands. They are arranged in 12 orbital planes with 49 satellites in each plane at 1,200 km.
Calling the launch of LVM3 M2 a historic event, S Somanath, the chairman of Isro, lauded the synergetic efforts between Isro, NSIL and OneWeb in realising the mission in a record time. He specifically acknowledged the design and development of an inertial navigation system at LPSC for C25 operations.
This was one of the biggest commercial orders executed by Isro. With this launch, the LVM3 enters into global market in a grand manner.