With a new mission, ISRO’s heaviest rocket enters the global commercial service market

The ISRO (Indian Space Research Organisation) is preparing to launch 36 broadband communication satellites aboard Launch Vehicle Mark 3 (LVM3), the space agency’s heaviest rocket, with the countdown already underway. As the 24-hour countdown comes to an end on Saturday at midnight, this project is noteworthy for more than one reason.

Here are five mission-related points:

1. This is ISRO’s heaviest launcher’s first commercial mission. In addition, the payload mass of 5,796 kg is the heaviest.

2. The contract for the launch between NewSpace India Limited (NSIL), ISRO’s commercial arm, and the UK-based ‘OneWeb’ is described as a “key milestone.” Bharti Enterprises of India is a major investor in OneWeb, a global communications network powered by space. OneWeb allows governments, communities, and businesses to connect.

3. The LVM3 “is making its entry into the global commercial launch service market,” according to the space agency’s website.

4. This is also the first mission involving multiple satellites. Thirty-six satellites “will be placed into orbit one by one LVM3” from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre in Sriharikota, Andhra Pradesh.

5. This is not only NSIL’s first mission with LVM3, but it is also the first time an Indian rocket has carried a six-ton payload.

It is also LVM3’s first mission to LEO (low earth orbit), a relatively closer orbit to the Earth. According to ISRO, the OneWeb Constellation operates in a LEO Polar Orbit, with satellites arranged in 12 rings (Orbital planes) with 49 satellites in each plane. Meanwhile, LVM3 is a three-stage vehicle with two solid motor strap-ons, a liquid propellant core stage, and a cryogenic stage.

Latest news

Related news