Designed to carry a satellite of up to 4,000 kg, ISRO will use the GSLV Mk-III-D2 for India’s first manned space mission ‘Gaganyaan’ in 2022.
Launch vehicle GSLV Mk-III-D2, built by the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO), lifted off at 5:30 pm on November 13. The rocket carried and successfully placed ISRO’s communication satellite GSAT-29 on Earth’s orbit, which is designed to have a mission life of 10 years.
In an official statement, Dr K Sivan, Chairman of ISRO said,
GSLV Mk-III is capable of lifting up to 4-tonne mass to Geosynchronous Transfer Orbit or a 10-ton payload to Low Earth Orbit. GSAT-29, which is a multi-beam communication satellite, weighs 3.4 tonne.
ISRO has planned for four more launch vehicle missions and six satellite missions by January 2019, reports News 18.
Here are a few things you need to know about the country’s heaviest rocket.
GSLV Mk-III will be carrying Indian astronauts for the country’s first human spaceflight programme ‘Gaganyaan’ in 2022.
It has a lift-off mass is 640 tonnes and it has a height of 43.43 metres.
At a lift-off mass of 3,423 kg, the GSAT-29 is the heaviest satellite to be lifted by an Indian rocket till now.
In June, the Government of India approved Rs 4,338 crore for building 10 units of the launcher over a period of five years.
For the first time, an Indian rocket has been tested with a cryogenic engine that functions on liquid oxygen and liquid hydrogen as propellants.
The project to build this vehicle was initiated in 1994 and it became operational in 2014, after 11 flight tests.
Prior to this, India used to rely on the French Ariane 5 rocket for its satellite launches.
At present, there are only four launch vehicles widely used to launch communication satellites.
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