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GSLV MK-III 4-tonne payload launch on June 5, says ISRO Chairman

The first launch of GSLV Mark –III, the satellite launch vehicle that can carry 4,000 kg payload, is scheduled for June 5, Indian Space Research Organisation Chairman A.S. Kiran Kumar announced.

Mr. Kumar said the launch vehicle will increase India’s ability to carry payloads from the current cap of 2.2 tonne. After launching 104 satellites in one go earlier this year, India’s space agency is highly recognised for its ability to put satellites into orbit.

The space scientist said all preparations for the launch are underway at the Satish Dhawan Space Centre at Sriharikota.

“A 20-tonne engine is going to get tested next month, which will give us the ability to put satellites up to four tonne in space,” he said.

Outreach centre

The Chairman also said that an outreach institute was being planned in Jeedimetla. It will make available to general users the resources of ISRO at the centre, which is likely to work with the National Remote Sensing Agency, another ISRO organisation.

Mr. Kumar was talking on the sidelines of a lecture he had delivered at the Indian Institute of Chemical Technology on Friday on occasion of National Technology Day.

IICT-ISRO tie-up

Sources at IICT said the institute could tie-up with ISRO as it did in the past, to produce polymers and other chemical components with space applications. Mr. Kumar had suggested an exchange between scientists of the two institutions to determine feasibility of collaboration.

Mr. Kumar who was closely involved with Mangalyaan or Mars Orbiter Mission, which was launched in 2013 to probe Mars, said the orbiter was expected to last only for six months but it has outlived its time.

He attributed the orbiter’s long life to judicious use of on-board fuel in navigating the orbiter’s path to the Red Planet.

“It is expected now to last many Martian years,” the Director Indian Space Research Organisation added.

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