India launches rocket with 31 satellites into space

The ISRO successfully launched another rocket on Thursday, deploying 31 satellites into space orbit.

On Thursday, India successfully placed a new Earth-imaging satellite and 30 smaller satellites belonging to eight different countries into orbit.

The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) rocket, which carried the satellites, was launched from the Sriharikota space port in southern India.

The Hyperspectral Imaging Satellite HysIS, which weighs about 380 kilograms, aims to study the Earth's surface in "visible, near infrared, and shortwave infrared regions of the electromagnetic spectrum", ISRO said in a statement.

It will also allow the identification of distinct objects from space.

"On the journey ahead, the road is full of traffic for us," ISRO chairman Kailasavadivoo Sivan, who was congratulating scientists at the launch centre, said.

The ISRO has an ambitious space program. According to SpaceFlight Now, Thursday's launch was the second in 15 days, following a separate launch earlier this month. It was also the sixth Indian space launch of the year, and the fourth PSLV flight of 2018.

The ISRO also has a series of missions lined up, including the launch of the 5,854-kilogram GSAT-11 on Wednesday, and a second moon mission in January next year.

The ISRO has so far launched over 250 foreign satellites from 28 countries since 1999.

Last February, the ISRO broke records by launching 104 satellites into orbit at the same time, while using only one rocket.

The pace at which rockets are being launched does not look to be slowing down, with NASA administrator Jim Bridenstine announcing earlier this week that "right now at NASA, there is more under way than in I don't know how many years past".

In October, a private Chinese company failed its attempt to a launch a rocket, which carried a satellite for state broadcaster CCTV, into space.

New Zealand-based company Rocket Lab completed the It's Business Time mission in November, which put seven payloads into orbit.

Following Rocket Lab's successful mission, the company secured another $140 million in funding, pushing the total money raised to $288 million.

Billionaire entrepreneur Elon Musk previously announced plans for a new SpaceX passenger spaceship code named Big Falcon Rocket (BFR). Since the announcement, Musk has changed the name of the passenger spaceship from BFR to Starship.

SpaceX has so far achieved 16 successful landings in a row.

With AAP

Related Coverage

Interstellar Technologies MOMO-2 rocket fails at lift-off

A second rocket developed by Japanese start-up Interstellar Technologies has failed at lift-off, with the 10-metre rocket exploding in a fireball.

Japanese startup rocket explodes in flames

A second rocket developed by Japanese start-up Interstellar Technologies has failed at lift-off, with the 10-metre rocket exploding in a fireball.

HPE brings high performance computing to astronauts in space

HPE's Spacebourne Computer will be open to astronauts on the International Space Station, allowing them to run experiments in space rather than sending data back to Earth.

Australian National University launches space innovation institute

InSpace is hoping to expand Australia's commercial and scientific space interests.