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Russian spacecraft launched with Indian payload

Artist's concept of the Coronas-Photon spacecraft. Image from Wikimedia

MOSCOW (PTI): Russia today successfully launched its CORONAS-Photon spacecraft with Indian payload to study the solar activity and its impact on the upper atmosphere of our planet.

'Cyclone-3' space launch vehicle lifted off with CORONAS-Photon spacecraft at 1840 IST today from Russia's northern Plesetsk cosmodrome and about two hour later it was placed on its designated orbit, Space Forces spokesman Lt Col Alexei Zolotukhin told 'Zvezda' TV channel of the Defence Ministry.

According to experts of MEFI Institute of Astrophysics, which will be coordinating the research and analysis of the solar mission, low-energy Gamma radiation telescope RT-2 developed by Mumbai-based Tata Institute of Fundamental Research is a major payload along with the NATALYA sensor developed by several Moscow institutes.

The scientific payloads allow registering with high time resolution the electro-magnetic radiation of Solar Fluxes in the energy range to examine the process of transformation of accumulated magnetic field energy into accelerated particles energy at the time of Solar Fluxes.

They would provide data for the detailed study of the mechanism of acceleration, distribution and inter-action of energetic particles in solar atmosphere to examine co-relation between solar activity and physical and mechanical processes in the earth's upper atmosphere.

India and Russia had signed the CORONAS-Photon agreement during Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's Moscow visit in December 2005.

Initially the launch of the Cyclone-3 rocket had been scheduled for Thursday, but was delayed by a day for technical reasons.

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