This ISRO page for the HysYS spacecraft says:

HysIS, the primary satellite of PSLV-C43 mission, weighing about 380 kg, is an earth observation satellite configured around ISRO’s Mini Satellite-2 (IMS-2) bus. The primary goal of HysIS is to study the earth’s surface in the visible, near infrared and shortwave infrared regions of the electromagnetic spectrum.

This has recently launched (29-Nov-2018) as PSLV-C43.

It has several images, and I've cropped one below.

In addition to HysYS, the smallsat at the top of the payload holder (folded solar panel facing us) there are several terraced layers below it, with lots of electronics and at least sixteen shoebox-sized enclosutes, about eight of them are the same blue in color but here are silver and gold shoeboxes as well.

At first I would have thought they were all cubesat deployers, but their shapes and sizes are more mixed than I would have expected for that.

Is it possible to explain what these shoe boxes are? If they are there to deploy the thirty commercial cubesats and nanosats, there doesn't seem to be enough of them, and I would expect them to be standardized and uniform in construction and mechanism.

enter image description here


1 Answer 1


The blue boxes on upper deck are cubesat deployers by ISIS. One that can house four 3U cubesats is called 'Quadpack'


ISRO/Antrix also provides its own set of deployers and separation mechanisms for smallsats. Here's a brochure for those.


On lower deck (equipment bay) it is mainly avionics but some region can be utilized for payload.

http://www.bsxindia.com/SomnathProjectDirector.pdf (See page 6 for PSLV payload envelop)

Above presentation is slightly old and ISRO has since then introduced few different satellite adaptors like this Multiple Satellite Adapter Version 8 (MSA-V8) with circular deck for PSLV-C42 / NovaSAR-S + S1-4 mission.


Custom made Multiple Satellite Adapter Version 2 (MSA-V2) for PSLV C28 / DMC3 mission with triangular deck.



Various versions of Dual Launch Adapter or DLA have also been used over time for multi-satellite PSLV missions.

  • $\begingroup$ oh my goodness, very nice answer! Thank you for taking the time to go deep here! $\endgroup$
    – uhoh
    Commented Dec 8, 2018 at 17:25
  • $\begingroup$ I just noticed this; I believe KnackSat was on PSLV-C43. tggs.kmutnb.ac.th/… $\endgroup$
    – uhoh
    Commented Dec 12, 2018 at 3:50
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @uhoh Sorry for late reply. All payloads on PSLV C43 are known, KNACKSAT was aboard SpaceX's SSO-A mission knacksat.space launch was arranged through Spaceflight Inc. For such small payloads it is not uncommon for them to hop over to another launch vehicle if orbit is similar as mediators like Spaceflight and ISILaunch Services provide that flexibility and buy capacity on multiple launch vehicles. $\endgroup$
    – Ohsin
    Commented Dec 18, 2018 at 20:09
  • $\begingroup$ Hi @Ohsin, there's a follow-up question: Info needed on PSLV launch adaptors and configurations $\endgroup$
    – uhoh
    Commented Jan 28, 2022 at 0:25

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