Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) has achieved another marvel to its list of accomplishments in space journey with its own indigenous cryogenic engine, joining the US, Russia, France, Japan and China.
ISRO has launched successfully its Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle GSLV-F05 rocket from Sriharikota on September 8 using the indigenous cryogenic engine and lofted off the heavy weather satellite INSAT-3DR weighing 2,800-kg into the specified orbit.
The weather satellite will help in future weather prediction with more accuracy and provide better commercial opportunities in international space commerce. Delayed by 40 minutes, the launch at 4:50PM went off as per the plan and the rocket was blasted off successfully.
The two-tonne satellite has jolted India into the club of heavy satellite launchers in international space research with cryogenic engine technology to lift such heavy satellites.
Measuring 161-ft in height, the GSLV-F05 rocket had carried out two successful flights in the past with GSLV-D5 and D6 missions in January 2014 and August 2015. Its first stage motor and four strap-on Vikas engines using a mixture of liquid hydrazine and nitrogen tetroxide powered the first two minutes of launch. In 17 minutes, the GSLV reached the orbit and successfully released satellite into the planned orbit of Earth.
The GSLV cryogenic engine lauches will enhance ISRO’s foray into the $300 billion international satellite launch market. Ever since the Mangalyaan or Mars Orbit Mission (MOM) in 2014, India has been in the reckoning of the international space commerce as a lead player and so far it has launched 51 foreign satellites.
ISRO will launch two more GSLV-MkII missions this year and it is working on developing a C-25 engine which will double the power of launch capacity for rockets to lift satellite weighing over 4,000kg in the future and also match the future space travel requirements like NASA’s Dawn spacecraft.