ISRO launches India’s Most Powerful Rocket, GSLV Mk III

It is carrying GSAT-19, which can revolutionize communications and provide internet services.

ISRO launches India's Most Powerful rocket, GSLV Mk III
Image Credit: Public Domain

This Monday, the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) has successfully launched India’s most powerful rocket Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle (GSLV MK III). With the launch, Isro has demonstrated its mastery in developing a cryogenic engine, a technology denied to it years ago.

The rocket has the capacity to hurl four-tonne communication satellites into a higher orbit. It also has the potential to carry a ten-tonne capsule for a manned mission to space.

Scientists also named it as ‘fat boy’ as it demonstrates Isro’s capability in designing from scratch a homegrown solution for its rockets.

GSLV MK III carried a 3136 kg GSAT-19 satellite with communication transponders. It also tests technologies like a miniaturized heat pipe, fiber optic gyro, Micro-Electro-Mechanical Systems (MEMS) accelerometer, Ku-band TTC transponder, as well an indigenous Lithium-ion Battery.

A S Kiran Kumar, Chairman of Isro said, “It is a historic day. The entire team has worked since 2002. The vehicle carried the next generation satellite. We are looking forward to getting the satellite operational.”

It also laid a strong foundation for its ambitious future projects, including Chandraayan-II and a manned mission.

The rocket lifted off from the second launch pad at Satish Dhawan Space Centre in Sriharikota at 5.28pm. Around 16 minutes after takeoff, the vehicle placed the satellite into the geosynchronous transfer orbit.

The prime minister congratulated team ISRO and tweeted,

In actual, The GSLV MK III is the commencement of two complex technologies. A vehicle that can carry twice the payload weight and a high throughput satellite. It is the continued efforts of the team and industry contribution.

The three-stage vehicle was propelled by an indigenously designed and developed cryogenic engine CE-20 in its upper stage (C25 stage) before it ejected the satellite into its orbit. Along with the rocket, it was also the first launch for the CE-20 engine.

Satish Dhawan Space Centre director P Kunhikrishnan said, “Isro has made it a habit of executing complex jobs in the most professional way. This has culminated in yet another successful event in Sriharikota.”