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In the video New ISRO Chief Rocket Man Sivan K, A Farmer's Son, Takes On SpaceX after about 08:33 the interviewer asks ISRO's chairperson Kailasavadivoo Sivan about a satellite that was built in 24 hours.

Dr. Sivan seems to say that it wasn't purposely built in 24 hours, but I'm still curious how this was possible, which satellite it was, and what the story might be behind it being built in 24 hours.

Since the video was posted in February 2018, I'm guessing that it might have been on the January 12, 2018 PLSV launch.

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Pallava Bagla is known to misrepresent or exaggerate things unfortunately and poor English of Chairman and edited out answer makes it a mess further.

The spacecraft they are talking about is Microsat-TD (~130 kg) an experimental earth imaging satellite meant to operate at ~350 km orbit, and it wasn't 'built' in 24 hrs. But its final payload integration and checkouts were done within that period. Director of ISRO Satellite Space Centre (now renamed U R Rao Satellite Centre) on 12 January 2018, PSLV-C40/Cartosat-2F post launch address described it like running 100 meter dash during last leg of a marathon, he said Microsat-TD payload reached and cleared Assembly, Integration and Testing (AIT), thermal implementation, solar panel scrubbing and other checkouts within 24 hrs before handout for launch.

Few slides on Microsat-Tech Demonstrator

https://imgur.com/a/erFDi

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    $\begingroup$ Thanks for the speedy answer! I did notice that the interviewer asked slightly leading questions. When you are on the spot like that, with the camera rolling, you have to do your best. I have one or two more questions about items discussed there, I'll post them in another day or two. $\endgroup$ – uhoh May 13 '18 at 14:56
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    $\begingroup$ Your linked video is interesting, I'll take some time to watch the whole thing as well. $\endgroup$ – uhoh May 13 '18 at 14:57
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    $\begingroup$ Goodness that must have been an intense amount of stress for the engineers! I've worked on projects where we had just over one month to integrate and test flight software, and that was a rush in itself! $\endgroup$ – ChrisR May 14 '18 at 4:26
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    $\begingroup$ If this answer is correct, the "cubesat" tag should be removed from the question. 130kg would be a very, very dense cubesat. $\endgroup$ – Erin Anne May 15 '18 at 5:50
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    $\begingroup$ @ErinAnne I'll remove the tag now, thanks for the heads-up! Let me know if the new tags are okay. (or do we need an ultradense-cubesat tag ;-) I happened to see your comment by accident. I don't fully understand how comments work, but I believe that since it isn't below my question, or directly below a comment I've made without an @ sign, nor does it have my username with the @ sign, I didn't receive a notification. Best to put comments about the question below the question, not another user's answer. $\endgroup$ – uhoh May 15 '18 at 9:01
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The Indian media has habit of exaggerating and diluting the facts. As can be easily seen, the point where he was clarifying about microsat, the video was cut. He is actually is a great systems engineer. Also, one or more places the video seem to be edited where he was clarifying the statements made by the reporter. On one face the media here compares with SpaceX, and tries to provide some relief that we are not far behind and on the other hand criticises the point of Space Missions in a “poor” country. Also, comparison to SpaceX will definitely not be fair as ISRO’s main objective has been in past and still is to develop space technologies only for general good of Indian population, therefore the effort and experience of ISRO is in vastly different and diverse sectors. Many of the technologies were denied by the “Elite” nations and thus has to be developed from scratch here whereas SpaceX utilises the RICH environment and experience and infrastructure of USA.

Just to be clear on facts, it took around 6 months time to develop microsat.

Information Source: Well it was developed/engineered in the same lab while I worked on a different satellite.

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  • $\begingroup$ Thanks for your perspective. I can see the painstaking care K. Sivan takes to answer both accurately and simply at the same time, and in this case the task was almost impossible considering the amount of pre-loading the interviewer was putting into the questions. It also looks like the interview may have been unexpected or at least longer than expected, you can see Sivan checking his watch and then leaving before the taping even finished. I removed the YouTube viewer from the question, the link still works if someone really wants to watch it. $\endgroup$ – uhoh May 15 '18 at 14:33
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    $\begingroup$ The Indian media is really not reliable source of Information. We ourself sometime take a light laugh the way truth is sometimes molded by media $\endgroup$ – Prakhar May 15 '18 at 14:36
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    $\begingroup$ ISRO got to Mars orbit on the first try. The feat is astounding. 100+ satellites deployed in one launch, this guy, etc. ISRO is doing an amazing job. $\endgroup$ – uhoh May 15 '18 at 14:37

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