India’s Radar Imaging Satellite crashes in Indian Ocean after 13 years of successful mission

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India's Radar Imaging Satellite crashes in Indian Ocean after 13 years of successful mission

The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) on Thursday said that the Radar Imaging Satellite (Risat-2) has made a re-entry into Earth’s atmosphere.

The spacecraft crashed over the Indian Ocean near Jakarta on October 30. The 300 kilogram probe was launched in 2009.

Isro said that Risat-2 carried 30 kg of fuel for an initial designed life of four years and clarified that on re-entry, there was no fuel left in the satellite and hence no contamination or explosion by fuel is expected.

“With the proper maintenance of orbit and mission planning by the spacecraft operations team in ISRO and by economical usage of fuel, Risat-2 provided very useful payload data for 13 years. Since its injection, Risat-2’s radar payload services were provided for various space applications,” Isro said. It added that the pieces generated due to aero-thermal fragmentation would not have survived reentry heating and hence no fragments would have impacted on Earth.

The re-entry was monitored by the Indian System for Safe and Sustainable Space Operations Management (IS4OM) facility for the last one month with analysis carried out by VSSC and ISTRAC teams through its in-house developed analysis software and tracking the object utilising Multi Object Tracking Radar (MOTR) at SDSC, Sriharikota.

Isro added that the orbital data available from USSPACECOM was regularly used to predict the re-entry time and impact.

“Risat-2 is a clear example of ISRO’s capability to carry out spacecraft orbital operations in an efficient and optimal way. As Risat-2 re-entered within 13.5 years, it complied with all necessary international mitigation guidelines for Space Debris, showing ISRO’s commitment towards long term sustainability of Outer Space as well,” Isro said.

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