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India’s heaviest rocket with GSAT-19 satellite lifts-off into space

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On June 5, 2017, Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) successfully launched the Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle-Mark III (GSLV-Mk III) – D1, along with a communications satellite GSAT-19 from Satish Dhawan Space Centre at Sriharikota in Andhra Pradesh.

Details related to the launch and its implications:

43 metres tall GSLV-Mk III weighed 640 tonnes. It’s main and bigger cryogenic engine has been developed by ISRO scientists.

  • The communications satellite GSAT-19 weighed 3,136kg (heaviest to be lifted by an Indian rocket till date). It is a multi-beam satellite that carries Ka and Ku band forward and return link transponders and geostationary radiation spectrometer. GSAT-19 has a life span of 10 years.
  • Director of Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre Mr. K. Sivan has mIndia's heaviest rocket with GSAT-19 satellite to lift-off into space todayentioned that payload will be gradually increased in future flights of the GSLV Mk-III.
  • The success of this mission has proven India’s ability to launch four-tonne satellites on its own rocket. This will help in saving huge amount of funds which is paid to foreign space agencies for similar launchings.

About GSLV Mk-III:

  • The GSLV-Mk III-D1 is a three-stage vehicle with indigenous cryogenic upper stage engine designed to carry heavier communication satellites into the Geosynchronous Transfer Orbit (GTO).
  • In 2014, ISRO had flown a similar rocket without the cryogenic engine but with 3.7-tonne payload to test in-flight structural stability and the aerodynamics.
  • GSLV MkIII-D1 is capable of lifting payloads of up to 4,000 kg into the GTO and 10,000 kg into the Low Earth Orbit.
  • GSLV-Mk III (43.43 metres) is slightly shorter than Mk-II version that is around 49 metres tall, but has a greater punch power.

Quick Facts about ISRO:

ISRO is the space agency of Government of India, formed with a vision to harness space technology for national development

  • Formation Year: 1969
  • Founded by: Vikram Sarabhai
  • Headquarters: Bengaluru
  • Current Chairman: A S Kiran Kumar