New Delhi: An Indian rocket failed in its attempt Thursday to put a satellite into orbit to provide real-time images used to monitor cyclones and other potential natural disasters.
The National Space Agency said that shortly after the rocket was launched from the space center in Sriharikota in southern India, a technical failure occurred in the third and final ignition phase.
This satellite is geostationary, which means it will move synchronously with the earth and remain in a fixed position. It will provide images of cloud eruptions and thunderstorms, and acquire data for agricultural, forestry, and marine purposes.
The space agency did not disclose what will happen to the rocket and satellite after the ignition fails.
“Since the third stage has not ignited, it has not attained the velocity which would keep it in orbit. It will fall back to Earth sometime soon. Tracking will tell that later,” said Pallava Bagla, an outside expert.
This was the fourth failure of 14 rocket launches of a geostationary platform since 2001, the Economic Times newspaper said.
India has an ambitious space program, and decades of research have allowed it to develop satellite, communications and remote sensing technologies to help solve daily domestic problems, from predicting fish migration to predicting storms and floods.
The government has set the deadline for India’s first manned space flight to 2022.
In 2019, India sent a spacecraft to explore the water deposits on the back of the moon, but failed to land the spacecraft on the lunar surface.