Chennai: Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) added yet another feather in their cap with the successful launch of second developmental flight of Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle MarkIII (GSLV MkIII-D2) on Wednesday from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre (SDSC) SHAR, Sriharikota.
GSLV MkIII-D2 lifted off from the Second Launch Pad of SDSC SHAR at 05:08 pm, carrying the 3423-kg GSAT-29 satellite. About 17 minutes later, the vehicle injected the satellite into the Geosynchronous Transfer Orbit (GTO) as planned.
After injection, ISRO’s Master Control Facility at Hassan assumed the control of the satellite. The scientists will undertake three orbit-raising manoeuvres in the next few days so as to position the satellite in the Geostationary Orbit at its designated location.
ISRO declared GSLV MKIII as operational with Chandrayaan-2 and Gaganyaan missions to be launched by this heavy-lifter.
GSLV Mk III is a three-stage heavy lift launch vehicle developed by the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO). Two massive boosters (S200) with solid propellant constitute the first stage. ISRO sources said that this is the second biggest booster currently active in the world.
The core with liquid propellant form the second stage and the cryogenic engine completes the final stage.
GSAT-29 is a multiband, multi-beam communication satellite, intended to serve as test bed for several new and critical technologies. Its Ku-band and Ka-band payloads are configured to cater to the communication requirements of users including those from remote areas especially from Jammu & Kashmir and North-Eastern regions of India.
In addition, the Q/V-Band communication payload onboard is intended to demonstrate the future high throughput satellite system technologies. Geo High Resolution Camera will carry out high resolution imaging. Optical Communication Payload will demonstrate data transmission at a very high rate through optical communication link.
ISRO Chairman Dr K Sivan said India has achieved significant milestone with the heaviest launcher lifting off the heaviest satellite from the Indian soil.
“The launch vehicle has precisely placed the satellite in its intended orbit. I congratulate entire ISRO team for this achievement,” he said.
He said ISRO would conduct an unmanned mission by December 2020 ahead of the manned Gaganyaan one in 2021.
R Umamaheswaran, Scientific Secretary, ISRO said hundreds of youngsters worked on the current mission across various centres.
“We are proud of the entire team who were part of this mission. At ISRO, we have an inspiring work culture. We are now already on to our next mission that’s coming up in two weeks,” Umamaheswaran said.
Jayakumar B, mission director, GSLV Mark III said it is the guidance of the Mentors at ISRO that helped the team.
“Whenever we faced some obstacles, we were guided by these Mentors. We also got inspiring support from our industry partners for this mission,” he said.
K Pankaj Damodar, project director, GSAT-29 said the launch will help to bridge the digital divide. He also said several next generation payload technologies will be demonstrated with this mission soon.
The first successful mission of GSLV Mark III was an experimental suborbital flight in 2014. Subsequently, GSLV Mark III-D1 launched GSAT-19, a high throughput communication satellite, with a lift-off mass of 3150 kg, into GTO on June 5, 2017.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi congratulated ISRO scientists via a tweet and said: “The double success sets a new record of putting the heaviest satellite in orbit by an Indian launch vehicle.”