Government of India established the Department of Space in 1969 to promote development and application of space science and technology for socio-economic benefits. Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) is the primary agency under the Department of Space for executing space programmes. ISRO is amongst the six largest government space agencies in the world, along with USA's NASA, Russia's RKA, Europe's ESA, China's CNSA and Japan's JAXA. Its primary objective is to advance space technology and use its applications for national benefit. India has launched 71 Indian satellites till 30 August 2013 since its first attempt in 1975. Satellites have been launched from various vehicles, including American, Russian, European satellite-launch rockets, and the U.S. Space Shuttle. The organisation responsible for Indian satellites is the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO). Here are few major satellites India has launched.
1) Aryabhata : Named after the great Indian astronomer Aryabhata, Aryabhata was the the first indigenously built Indian satellites which was launched from Volgograd Launch Station (presently in Russia) in April 19,1975. The pupose of this satellite is to provided technological experience in building and operating a satellite system. The mission life of Aryabhata was 6 months(nominal), Spacecraft mainframe active till March,1981.
2) Bhaskara-I : It was the the first experimental remote sensing satellite built in India which was launched from Volgograd Launch Station (presently in Russia) in Jun 07,1979. The onboard TV camera sent imageries which we reused in the field of Hydrology and Forestry. SAMIR sent rich scientific data which were used for oceanographic studies. The satellite provided ocean and land surface data. One of two onboard cameras malfunctioned, however it sent back more than two thousand images. Housekeeping telemetry was received until re-entry in 1991. The mission life of Aryabhata was about 10 years ( Re-entered in 1989 ) .
3) Rohini : Rohini was the first Indian launch satellite from SHAR Centre, Sriharikota, India in August 10,1979. Rohini is the name given to a series of satellites launched by the Indian Space Research Organisation. The Rohini series consisted of four satellites, all of which were launched by the Indian space research organisation Satellite Launch Vehicle (SLV) and three of which made it successfully to orbit. The series were mostly experimental satellites.
4) APPLE (Ariane Passenger Payload Experiment) : APPLE was used for nearly two years to carry out extensive experiments on time, frequency and code division multiple access systems, radio networking computer inter connect, random access and pockets witching experiments. It was used in several communication experiments including relay of TV programmes and radio networking. It was an experimental communication satellite with a C-Band transponder launched by Indian Space Research Organisation on June 19, 1981 by Ariane, a launch vehicle of the European Space Agency (ESA) from Centre Spatial Guyanais near Kourou in French Guiana. APPLE was India's first three-axis stabilised experimental Geostationary communication satellite. The mission like of APPLE was 2 years.
5) INSAT (Indian National Satellite System) : The Insat-1A was launched by a Delta in April 1982 but was abandoned in September 1983 when its attitude control propellant was exhausted. INSAT is a series of multipurpose Geo-stationary satellites launched by ISRO to satisfy the telecommunications, broadcasting, meteorology, and search and rescue operations. Commissioned in 1983, INSAT is the largest domestic communication system in the Asia Pacific Region. It is a joint venture of the Department of Space, Department of Telecommunications, India Meteorological Department, All India Radio and Doordarshan. The overall coordination and management of INSAT system rests with the Secretary-level INSAT Coordination Committee. The INSAT series setelleies are INSAT-2E, INSAT-3A, INSAT-3C, INSAT-3D, INSAT-3E, KALPANA-1, GSAT-2, Edusat, INSAT-4 Series etc
6) OceanSat-1 or IRS-P4 : IRS-P4 (OCEANSAT) is the first satellite primarily built for Ocean applications, weighing 1050 kg placed in a Polar Sun Synchronous orbit of 720 km, launched by PSLV-C2 from SHAR Centre, Sriharikota on May 26, 1999. It is a part of the Indian Remote Sensing satellite series. This satellite carries Ocean Colour Monitor (OCM) and a Multi - frequency Scanning Microwave Radiometer (MSMR) for oceanographic studies. IRS-P4 thus vastly augment the IRS satellite system of ISRO comprising four satellites, IRS-1B, IRS-1C, IRS-P3 and IRS-1D and extend remote sensing applications to several newer areas. Mission completed on August 8, 2010 after serving for 11 years and 2 months.
7) Technology Experiment Satellite (TES) : The Technology Experiment Satellite (TES), weighing 1108 kg, was launched on October 22,2001. TES is an experimental satellite to demonstrate and validate the technologies like attitude and orbit control system, high-torque reaction wheels, new reaction control system, light-weight spacecraft structure, solid state recorder, X-band phased array antenna, improved satellite positioning system, miniaturised TTC and power systems and, two-mirror-on-axis camera optics. The launch of TES made India the second country in the world after the United States that can commercially offer images with one meter resolution. It is used for remote sensing of civilian areas, mapping industry and geographical information services. TES helped the US army with high-resolution images during the 9/11 counter-terrorism offensive against the Taliban. TES also carried a panchromatic camera for remote sensing experiments.
8) Chandrayaan-1 : Chandrayaan-1, India's first first unmanned lunar probe or mission to Moon, was launched successfully on October 22, 2008 from SDSC SHAR, Sriharikota. The spacecraft was orbiting around the Moon at a height of 100 km from the lunar surface for chemical, mineralogical and photo-geologic mapping of the Moon. The spacecraft carries 11 scientific instruments built in India, USA, UK, Germany, Sweden and Bulgaria. After the successful completion of all the major mission objectives, the orbit has been raised to 200 km during May 2009. After suffering from several technical issues including failure of the star sensors and poor thermal shielding, Chandrayaan stopped sending radio signals at 01:30 IST on 29 August 2009 shortly after which, the ISRO officially declared the mission over. Chandrayaan operated for 312 days as opposed to the intended two years but the mission achieved 95 percent of its planned objectives.
9) Jugnu : The nanosatellite Jugnu weighing 3 kg is designed and developed by Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur under the guidance of ISRO. The satellite is intended to prove the indigenously developed camera system for imaging the Earth in the near infrared region and test image processing algorithms. Evaluate GPS receiver for its use in satellite navigation. Test indigenously developed MEMS based Inertial Measurement Unit (IMU) in space. Jugnu also carries a GPS receiver to aid tracking, and is intended to demonstrate a microelectromechanical inertial measurement unit.
10) SARAL (Satellite with ARgos and ALtiKa) : The Satellite with ARGOS and ALTIKA (SARAL) is a joint Indo-French satellite mission for oceanographic studies. SARAL will perform altimetric measurements designed to study ocean circulation and sea surface elevation. The ISRO built satellite with payloads modules (ALTIKA altimeter, DORIS, Laser Retroreflector Array (LRA) and ARGOS-3 (Advanced Research and Global Observation Satellite) data collection system provided CNES will be launched by Indian Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle rocket into the Sun-synchronous orbit (SSO). ISRO will be responsible for the platform, launch, and operations of the spacecraft. A CNES/ISRO MOU (Memorandum of Understanding) on the SARAL mission was signed on Feb 23, 2007. SARAL was successfully launched on 25 February 2013