Albert Einstein said “We owe a lot to Indians, who taught us how to count, without which no worthwhile scientific discovery could have been made.”
India’s space programme stands out as one of the most cost-effective in the world. ISRO (Indian Space Research Organization) has launched 45 satellites for 19 countries till March 2015. ISRO currently has a constellation of 9 communication satellites, 1 meterological satellite, 10 earth observation satellites and 1 scientific satellite.
- Satellite Launch Vehicle (SLV) – an all-solid four-stage satellite launch vehicle. The SLV can place 40 kg into low earth orbit.
- Augmented Satellite Launch Vehicle (ASLV) – an all-solid five-stage satellite launch vehicle. The ASLV can place 150 kg into low earth orbit.
- Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) – a four-stage rocket with liquid and solid stages. The PSLV can place 1600 kg in 620 km sun-synchronous polar orbit and 1050 kg satellite in geo-synchronous transfer orbit.
- Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle Mark I/II (GSLV-I/II) – a three-stage rocket with solid, liquid and cryo stages. The GSLV can place 2200 kg into geostationary transfer orbit.
- Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle (GSLV-MkIII) successfully tested in December 2014, to launch heavier communication satellites weighing 4500 to 5000 kg, thus enhancing India’s capability to be a competitive player.
- India second moon mission, Chandrayaan II, set to be launched in 2016-17, will have a soft land over a wheeled robotic vehicle to explore the landing area.
- Manned mission to space by 2020.
- ISRO also plans to carry out an unmanned probe (Aditya-1) to Sun
ISRO milestones (2000-2015)
- 2014-15: Mars Orbiter Mission is ISRO’s first interplanetary mission to Mars with a spacecraft designed to orbit Mars in an elliptical orbit of 372 kms by 80,000 kms. The primary driving technological objective is to reach Mars (Martian Transfer Trajectory), then to orbit around Mars (Mars Orbit Insertion) over a period of nine months.
- 2013: PSLV (C20), successfully launched Indo-French Satellite SARAL along with six smaller foreign satellites from Sriharikota.
- 2012: PSLV (C19 and later C21), launched India’s first radar imaging Satellite (RISAT-1) from Sriharikota, of which one orbited a French Remote Sensing Satellite SPOT-6 and the Japanese satellite PROITERES.
- 2012: India’s heaviest communication satellite, GSAT-10, was successfully launched by Ariane-5 VA 209 from Kourou, French Guiana.
- 2008: A dedicated military reconnaissance satellite, CARTOSAT 2A, was launched on a PSLV rocket in 2007, to take pictures of the earth even in overcast conditions. Its launch was rapidly followed by the launch of two more advanced imaging satellites by 2008, to give India the capability of keeping an eye round-the-clock on the region surrounding the country.
- 2008: India successfully launched an unmanned scientific mission to the Moon (Chandrayaan-I), on board its Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle and placed in 100 km polar orbit around the moon.
- 2007: PSLV-C8 successfully places an Italian satellite, AGILE into its orbit.2007: SRE-1 splashed down in the Bay of Bengal and was successfully recovered by the Indian Coast Guard and Indian Navy, making India one of the few countries to have re-entry technology.
- 2007: Successful launch of CARTOSAT-2, SRE-1, LAPAN-TUBSAT and PEHUENSAT-1 on PSLV C7.
- 2007: INSAT-4B successfully launched by Arianespace.
- 2006: Second operational flight of GSLV (F02) unsuccessful. GSLV-F02 was carrying INSAT-4C.
- 2005: Launch of CARTOSAT and HAMSAT by PSLV-C6 from the second launch pad (Universal Launch Pad). INSAT 4A Launched successfully by the European Ariane-5G.
- 2004: First operational flight of GSLV (F01) successfully launches EDUSAT.
- 2003: GSLV-D2, the second developmental launch of GSLV with GSAT-2 successful.
- 2002: INSAT-3C launched successfully by Arianespace, PSLV-C4 launches KALPANA-1.
- 2001: Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle-D1 (GDLV-D1), the first developmental launch of GSLV with GSAT-1 onboard partially successful.
- 2000: INSAT-3B was launched.
Technical Consultancy by ISRO
- 33 countries and 3 multinational bodies have formal co-operative arrangements in place with the Indian Space Research Organization.
- Some recent areas where consulting services have been provided are: gold plating application on MMIC-based Ku-band receiver and on aluminum boxes, fabrication of precision components, mechanical shock tests, etc., to name a few.
Space Budgets (2012-13)
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European Space Agency