India Hopes New Rocket Can Carry Humans into Space

India Monday launched its heaviest rocket, along with a satellite, that is believed to be able to send humans into space in the future.

India on Monday scripted history as it successfully launched its heaviest rocket GSLV MkIII-D1 carrying communication satellite GSAT-19.

The countdown for launching GSLV Mk-III rocket with GSAT-19 satellite began at 3.58pm on Sunday at Sriharikota.

Today's GSLV mission is significant for India as ISRO had been depending on foreign launchers for orbiting communication satellites weighing more than 2,300 kgs.

'The nation is proud, ' he tweeted. Meanwhile, Director of the ISRO propulsion complex, P V Venkata Krishnan described the launch vehicle as a game changer and said that the organisation had made quantum leaps when it came to hardware. The GSLV-Mk II, at 49 metres, is slightly taller than the Mk III, which stands to a height of 45 metres.

GSAT 19 has a weight of 3126 kg which makes it the heaviest satellite launched in India. It is carrying the 3,136 KG communication satellite GSAT-19.

# Randeep S Surjewala: Congratulations to the entire team of scientists and space engineers at ISRO!

The successful launch put to rest space agency ISRO's concerns, triggered by failures of several maiden flights.

Mk III, or "Fat Boy", lifted off from the Sriharikota space centre in southern India at 5.28 p.m. (1158 GMT) in clear blue skies.

GSLV-Mk III is a three-stage vehicle with two solid motor strap-ons (S200), a liquid propellant core stage (L110) and a cryogenic stage (C-25).

When ISRO first tested the GSLV Mk III back in December 2014, the space agency only flew the lower stages of the rocket on a suborbital flight.

Billed as a potential gamechanger satellite, GSAT-19 was equivalent to having a constellation of 6-7 of the older variety of communication satellites in space. Besides, it carries a geostationary radiation spectrometer (GRASP) payload to monitor and study the nature of charged particles and the influence of space radiation on satellites and their electronic components. The launch vehicle also had the communication satellite GSAT 19 on board which was separated opportunely. Currently, only US, Russia, and China are capable of sending manned missions into space.This rocket is worth an estimated value of Rs 400 crore.

  • Zachary Reyes