EOS-01 is an advanced earth observation satellite whose synthetic aperture radar (SAR) has an all-weather and day-and-night observation capability.
It can also see through clouds. EOS-01 will be used for civil applications in agriculture, forestry, soil moisture, geology, coastal monitoring and flood monitoring.
The customer satellites include 4 each from the USA and Luxembourg and 1 from Lithuania with objectives ranging from multi mission remote sensing to maritime applications and technology demonstration.
They are being launched under a commercial agreement with NewSpace India Limited (NSIL).
This will be ISRO’s first satellite launch since the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic , which has slowed down all space activities since March.
The last satellite ISRO had launched from Indian soil was PSLV-C48 which also carried a surveillance satellite, Risat-2BR1, on December 11, 2019.
Communication satellite GSAT-30 was the only ISRO satellite launched this year on January 17 but from the European spaceport in French Guyana.
Soon after the PSLV-C49 mission, ISRO is targeting to launch PSLV-C50 mission carrying GSAT-12R communication satellite in December.
The agency is also gearing up for the much-awaited first demonstration test of its new rocket Small Satellite Launch Vehicle (SSLV) or mini-PSLV by December.
(In view of the strict COVID-19 pandemic norms in place at Sriharikota , it may be noted that ISRO has not allowed media personnel to gather at the Satish Dhawan Space Centre for the launch.
The public viewing gallery will also be closed during this launch.
However, the live telecast of the launch will be available on ISRO website, Youtube, Facebook and Twitter channels besides Doordarshan.
Report by: Philip Mathews