- The launch of Chandrayaan-2, India’s second moon mission, was aborted after a technical snag in the launch vehicle system- GSLV Mk-III rocket. GSLV Mk-III has been touted as the most powerful rocket built by ISRO.
- The GSLV Mk-III is a three-stage rocket developed by the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO). It has been designed to carry four-tonne class satellites into Geosynchronous Transfer Orbit (GTO) or about 10 tons to Low Earth Orbit (LEO).
- The first stage consists of two strap-on tanks fitted to the either side of the rocket. The tanks contain solid fuel that is burnt, providing the initial thrust to fly the rocket out of Earth’s atmosphere.
- The second stage consists of the core booster. It burns liquid fuel and is the primary source of thrust after the strap-on tanks detach from the rocket.
- The final stage is a cryogenic engine installed in the top part of the GSLV Mk-III. The cryogenic upper stage provides the last-mile thrust after the liquid core booster separates from the rocket.
- GSLV Mk-III had two successful flights till now— a) it carried and deployed the GSAT-19 communication satellite in June 2017 and b) the GSAT-29 communication satellite in November 2018.
- Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicles (GSLV) are space launch vehicle. They are used to put into geostationary orbits that are over 30,000 km from Earth. They use a different fuel and can carry heavier payloads and travel deeper into space when compared to PSLVs.
- PSLVs (Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle) are also satellite launch vehicles. PSLV is designed mainly to deliver the satellites with lift-off mass of up to about 1750 Kg to Sun-Synchronous circular polar orbits of 600-900 Km altitude. These orbits are also referred to as “Low Earth Orbit (LEO).
3 min read