20 satellites in 26 minutes ! ISRO’s Historic PSLV-C34 Launch

The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) has made the nation proud once again. This time, it’s absolutely noteworthy as PSLV-C34 is the most exclusive of its kind to inject 20 satellites, including 17 foreign into orbit, at one stretch. India set record as the 320 tonne PSLV-C34 took off at 9.26 am from Satish Dhawan Space Centre along 20 satellites, constituting its principal Cartosat-2 series.

Also Read – INDIA’S First Scientific Observatory: Astrosat

Having it’s headquartered in Bengaluru, being functional since 1969, has been on a glorious run since its first satellite Aryabhata was launched on 19th April 1975, though it was launched by the Soviet Union. However, it was Rohini that became the maiden satellite to be positioned in orbit by the Indian manufactured vehicle SLV-3 in 1980.

Being specific, the past decade has been absolutely glorious for ISRO all the way; the complete detail of most significant ones has been provided below.

Year 2016:

  • ISRO launched PSLV-C33/IRNSS-1G on 28th April
  • PSLV-c32/IRNSS-1F launched on 10th March
  • ISRO launched PSLV-C31/IRNSS-1E on 20th January 2016

Year 2015:

  • ISRO goes for PSLV-C29/TeLEOS-1 Mission launch on 16th December.
  • GSAT-15 launched on 11th November 2015.
  • ISRO launched PSLV-C30/ASTROSAT on 28th September 2015. The 1513 Kg launched into the orbit along six satellites from global customers, including, 76 Kg LAPAN-A2 of Indonesia, 14 Kg NLS-14 (Ev9) from Canada, and four equivalent LEMUR satellites of the USA weighing about 28 Kg, were all launched in the PSLV.
  • ISRO launched GSLV-D6/GSAT-6 on 27th August 2015
  • PSLV-C28/DMC3 was launched on 10th July 2015.
  • PSLV-C27/IRNSS-1D was launched on 28th March 2015.

The year 2014:

  • ISRO launched LVM3-X/CARE Mission on 18th December 2014.
  • GSAT-16 was launched on 7th December 2014. GSAT-16 was successfully launched by Ariane-5 VA-221 from Kouru French Guiana.
  • ISRO launched PSLV-C26/IRNSS-1C on 16th October 2014.
  • ISRO launches IRNSS-1C from Sriharikota through PSLV-C26.
  • PSLV-C23 launched on 30th June 2014. PSLV-C23 efficiently launched SPOT 7 and four co-passenger satellites called AISAT, NLS 7.1, NLS 7.2 and VELOX-1 from Sriharikota.
  • ISRO goes for PSLV-C24/IRNSS-1B LAUNCH ON 4TH April 2014.
  • GSLV-D5/GSAT-14 was launched on 5th January 2014.

Year 2013:

  • PSLV-C25/Mars Orbiter Mission launched on November 5 from Sriharikota.
  • GSAT-7 was launched on August 30.
  • ISRO goes for a successful launch of GSAT-7 by Ariane-5 VA-215 from Kouru French Guiana.
  • INSAT-3D was launched on 26TH July 2013 by Ariane-5VA-214 from Kouru French Guiana.
  • ISRO goes for a successful PSLV-C22/IRNSS-1A launch from Sriharikota on 1st July 2013.
  • SARAL launched successfully along six commercial payloads from Sriharikota through PSLV-C20 on February 25, 2013.

Year 2012:

  • ISRO launched GSAT-10 on 29th September 2012. GSAT-10 was successfully launched by Ariane-5 VA-209 from Kouru French Guiana.
  • SPOT 6 and PROITERES were successfully launched by ISRO’s Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle PSLV-C21 on September 9, 2012.
  • ISRO’s PSLV-C19 successfully launched RISAT-1 from Sriharikota on 26th April 2012.

Year 2011:

  • ISRO’s PSLV-C18 flawlessly launched Megha-Tropiques, Jugnu, SRMSat and VesselSat-1 from Sriharikota on 12th October 2011.
  • ISRO successfully launched PSLV-C17/GSAT-12 Launch on 15th July 2011.
  • ISRO’s PSLV-C17 successfully launched GSAT-12 from Sriharikota on 21st May 2011
  • ISRO goes for a successful launch of GSAT-8 by Ariane-5 VA-202 from Kourou French Guiana on 21st May.
  • ISRO’s PSLV-C16 successfully launched three satellites – RESOURCESAT-2, YOUTHSAT, X-SAT from Sriharikota on 20th April 2011.

Year 2010:

  • ISRO successfully launched advanced communication satellite HYLAS, on an economical basis in companion with EADS-Astrium of Europe, by Ariane-5 V198 from Kouru French Guiana on 27th November 2010.
  • ISRO’s PSLV-C15 successfully launched five Satellites called, CARTOSAT-2B, ALSAT-2A, two nanosatellites-NLS-6.1 & 6.2 and a pico-satellite- STUDSAT from Sriharikota on 12th July 2010.

Year 2009:

  • ISRO’s PSLV-C14 successfully launches Seven Satellites – OCEANSAT-2, Four CUBESAT Satellites and Two RUBIN-9 from Sriharikota on 23rd September 2009.

Year 2008:

  • ISRO launched two Indian and eight foreign satellites by a single PSLV. It was India’s first moon mission Chandrayaan-1 by PSLV.

Year 2007:

ISRO launched Cartosat-2 with Space Capsule Recovery Experiment and two foreign satellites. At the same time, it successful recovered of the space capsule. The same year ISRO launched Italian satellite AGILE by PSLV and Insat-4CR by GSLV.

Where ISRO stand As Compare to Russia and US?

ISRO’s recent PSLV launch has not just dragged many attentions in the nation; the news has certainly made some significant buzz around the globe. The speculations of India being new global super power have rekindled once again. On this context, it’s obvious for the ISRO to be compared with other space organisations over the globe. Especially, it has been compared with two frontrunners like Russia and the United States. However, the space mission is something that obviously can’t be judged considering only the number of vehicles launched. The other crucial factors like orbital meets also do hold a crucial factor.

The leading organisations like NASA have provided the prominent sections of ISS. Among the others, those like CSA have also delivered significant contributions.

On a whole, ISRO has successfully launched about 111 satellites.

On the other hand, NASA, since 1958 has already launched more than 100 manned flights.

Talking about Russia, ROSCOSMOS have also delivered a great part of ISS. It has been quite in the space activities since 1950 as well. Especially, it has been commendable in terms of recovering from an extensive crisis around 2004.

So, on a concluding note, it has to be accepted that ISRO still comes at number 3 after RSCOMOS (Russia) and NASA taking the first couple of positions.


As mentioned above, ISRO doing something commendable is definitely not new; it’s development has been quite consistent and up to the mark considering the time frame. However, the records like 20 satellites being injected; constituting 17 foreign satellites into the orbit are definitely something noteworthy.

It is being considered a noteworthy attempt as the injections have been made through a single expedition only. It makes the world evident about India’s remote sensing service abilities as the Primary payload of the current expedition is the nation’s Cartosat-2 series that offers remote sensing. We are quite sure ISRO will be keeping on the good jobs in coming futures as well.

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