GSLV-Mk III, India’s ‘Baahubali’ rocket for Gaganyaan, Chandrayaan II1 min read . Updated: 15 Nov 2018, 06:22 PM IST
The launch of the rocket GSLV-Mk IIID is instrumental for ISRO as it will be used for the ambitious Gaganyaan
The Indian Space Research Organisation(ISRO) on Wednesday put into orbit India’s latest communication satellite amid concerns over Cyclone Gaja spoiling the launch. GSAT-29, a 3,423 kg advanced communications satellite, is also the heaviest ISRO has put into orbit. The launch of the rocket GSLV-Mk IIID is instrumental for ISRO as it will be used for the ambitious Chandrayaan II and the manned space mission Gaganyaan. GSLV-Mk III is capable of launching 4-tonne satellites, pushing India into the big boys’ space club.
Here’s what makes GSLV-Mk III the ‘Bahubali’ of Indian rockets:
First orbital test launch
ISRO successfully conducted the orbital test launch of GSLV-Mk III D by placing the GSAT-19 satellite in a geosynchronous transfer orbit on 5 June 2017. The first operational mission of this vehicle is going to be the January 2019 Chandrayaan II mission. The rocket took 15 years to make.
GSLV-Mk III is designed to carry 4-tonne satellites into geosynchronous transfer orbit or 10-tonne satellites into low earth orbit. This is about twice the capability of GSLV-Mk II.
Three-stage launch vehicle
It is a three-stage launch vehicle with two solid strap-ons, a liquid core stage and a cryogenic upper stage. Compared to the solid and liquid stages, the C25 cryogenic stage is more efficient as well as complex.
GSLV-MK III is 43 meters tall and even though it is the heaviest among India’s operational launch vehicles, it is also the shortest. GSLV-Mk III weighs 641 tonnes, which is equal to the weight of five fully loaded passenger planes.
Cost per launch
Each launch of GSLV-Mk III costs upwards of ₹ 300 crores to the space organisation.