The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) has achieved many milestones this year, which includes launching its own GPS and helping the Indian Army with its surgical strike by providing data from the recently launched Carostat 2C satellite.
One of the bigger achievements, when it comes to operational excellence, was achieved when ISRO launched 20 satellites with the PSLC-C34 launch. The launch included payloads from Canada, Germany, Indonesia and the United States.
An ambitious ISRO is setting a higher target for itself for the next year. According to an IANS report, it plans to launch a record 83 satellites on a single rocket in 2017. Only two out of these 83 satellites will be Indian, the other 81 will be from other countries around the world.Revenue from launching foreign satellites has been a significant part of ISRO's earnings in the last couple of years.
"During the first quarter of 2017 we plan to launch a single rocket carrying 83 satellites. Most foreign satellites are nano satellites," Rakesh Sasibhushan, Chairman-cum-Managing Director of Antrix Corporation told IANS.
A report in the Hindustan Times tells us that the agency earned $62.3 million from satellite launches in the year 2014-15, an increase of over 200 percent from the previous year.
Over the years, the payload capacity of the satellites has also gone up. The first launch in 2017 will be done with the help of PSLV-XL rocket which has a capacity of carrying a payload of 1,600 kg. ISRO is also testing Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle-Mk III (GSLV Mk III) which can handle a payload of up to 4,000 kg.