ISRO News and Updates

RoaringTigerHiddenDragon

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Yet another acknowledgment of ISRO's reduced capabilities. The government will now allow FDI in space sector.


Here is a specific quote from the above article, where the government is acknowledging the very issues we have been pointing out; and making course corrections. Basically to target 10% of global launch share, GoI is saying ISRO cannot do it. And I agree. ISRO's reduced capability cannot get us there.

We will have to strengthen everything from manufacturing, infrastructure to launching in order to capture a big chunk of the market. Launches have seriously gone down during the pandemic; ISRO was significantly affected. However, it is a good sign.
- Dr Rajeswari Rajagopalan, director of the centre for security, strategy and technology at the Observer Research Foundation.
 

Varoon2

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Mitigating( not exculpatory) factors for ISRO- far less funding than the other major space faring countries the US, Russia, France, China, Japan; historically, much less developed industrial and manufacturing base than at least 4 of those countries; space programme doesn't possess the huge importance for prestige and geo-politics that it does for US, Russia, China, France; sanctions placed on India causing huge delays; Covid badly affecting India.
 

RoaringTigerHiddenDragon

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Mitigating( not exculpatory) factors for ISRO- far less funding than the other major space faring countries the US, Russia, France, China, Japan; historically, much less developed industrial and manufacturing base than at least 4 of those countries; space programme doesn't possess the huge importance for prestige and geo-politics that it does for US, Russia, China, France; sanctions placed on India causing huge delays; Covid badly affecting India.
The only problem here is why only ISRO was affected when the US and France and even Russia went through worse Wuhan virus episodes than us. It is simply because ISRO does not have the depth in engineering talent to accomplish lofty projects. They are like the Indian cricket team of the 90s. ISRO needs a complete restructuring and a 21st century team to succeed. Just move actual manufacturing/assembly over to private sector and adopt the same model as in the US - NASA does R&D and design, while LM, Boeing, MCD do the actual manufacturing/launches. But even for this model, ISRO needs top space scientists and they are going to have a hard time recruiting such talent; as top talent require both money and a sense of purpose in serving India. India as it stands today simply does not produce top talent in science and engineering, especially in aeronautics, materials science, fuel chemistry, mechanical engineering etc, which are all very much needed in advanced rocketry. I dont think we are at a stage to execute advanced space projects and would remain a tier 2 space agency for a long, long time. This is an area where gap between us and China is going to increase many fold. I hope our private sector can bridge some of these gaps but FDI funded space startups that exclusively cater to ISRO's progress and growth is an untested model. So, let's see what happens.
Lack of vision, misplaced priorities and lethargic bureaucracy has a cost and ISRO, like other PSUs, suffers from this unchanging (unchangeable?) culture of Indian governance.
 

Indx TechStyle

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ISRO's reduced capabilities. The government will now allow FDI in space sector.
ISRO is a government agency which drove technology in India till space sector emerges as a new frontier of economy. It is not supposed to be involved in commercial activities. As start ups and companies have made enough progress to support the sector, any administration with IQ above room temperature will try to get funding for space sector.
 

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ISRO’s new series of heavy-lift rockets to carry between 5-16 tonnes to GTO

ISRO Photograph (WION)
To attain total self-reliance in the launch of heavy satellites (weighing above 4 tonnes) and to meet future demands, the Indian Space Research Organization is working on a fleet of five new rockets. According to a senior official, the five Heavy-lift Launch Vehicles (HLV) are in their project report stage.
In terms of design and appearance, this new fleet of rockets would be quite similar to the existing SSLV, PSLV and GSLV and GSLV Mk3 rockets, but they would be powered by even more capable, powerful and technologically advanced engines. Presently, India pays and utilises the services of Ariane-5, a foreign rocket, to launch satellites that weigh over 4 tonnes.
Speaking at a virtual event organised by ISRO and CII, N Sudheer Kumar, Director, Capacity Building Programme Office, ISRO, revealed that variants of this new fleet of heavy-lift rockets would be able to place a payload weighing anywhere between 4.9 tonnes and over 16 tonnes in the tonne synchronous Transfer Orbit (GTO). This is an enormous improvement over the current maximum lift capability of 4 tons that the GSLV Mk3 rocket has performed to GTO.
GTO is an intermediary orbit (180km at its closest point to the Earth and 36,000km at its farthest point from the Earth) into which heavy satellites are launched by rockets. After being placed in GTO, the satellites use their onboard propulsion to reach a circular orbit 36,000 km above the earth (it is at the same distance from the earth at any given point of time). Being in the 36,000km circular orbit (also known as Geostationary or GSO orbit) allows for communication and monitoring of a large portion of the Earth. three satellites in GSO orbit are capable of covering nearly the entire globe.
According to Kumar, the work to upgrade the lift capability of GSLV Mk3 to 7.5 tonnes to GTO, is on the verge of being concluded. This major upgrade to India’s rocket is being made possible owing to the development of two kinds of rocket engines: a semi-cryogenic engine that burns a special variant of kerosene (dubbed ISROsene) and liquid oxygen; and a cryogenic engine that burns a mixture of liquid hydrogen and liquid oxygen. The said semi-cryogenic engine stage is dubbed as the SC120, and the upgraded cryogenic engine stage is dubbed as the C32. As per ISRO’s naming convention for rocket stages, the letter (s) refers to the type of engine fuel-Solid (S), Liquid (L), Semi-cryogenic (SC) and Cryogenic (C) and the accompanying number refers to the mass (in tonnes) of propellant carried. Simply put, a rocket is a combination of multiple engines (stages) that are vertically stacked.
"Soon the stage will be inducted into the rocket, then we will not depend on foreign sources for the launch of heavy communication satellites (weighing over 4 or 5 tonnes)," Kumar said. Regarding ISRO’s ongoing projects, he outlined that work was underway on the full-scale model of the Reusable Launch Vehicle Technology Demonstrator (RLV-TD), besides work to scale up the proto-model of the air-breathing engine. For ISRO, these are crucial technologies to master to develop a fully reusable space vehicle dubbed the "TSTO," or Two Stage to Orbit.
The Director of ISRO’s CBPO also shared the configuration of the fleet of five heavy-lift rockets that were in their project report stage. The configurations refer to new and more powerful rocket stages-SC400 semi-cryogenic stage, the C27 cryogenic stage, and S250 solid rocket booster. Simply put, depending on the type of mission, payload to be lifted and rocket required, different variants of engines would be stacked vertically to run a relay race to space. Each stage would detach from the rocket after propelling the rocket to a certain altitude and speed, then the next engine would take over. This process goes on until the satellite (payload) reaches its final orbital destination.
In terms of materials, ISRO is said to be working on developing carbon-carbon composites, ceramic matrix composite for reusable vehicles, metal-foams for crash landing interplanetary probes, besides crucial components such as solar panels, fibre optics Atomic clocks, deployable antennas, lithium-ion batteries, Application-Specific Integrated Circuits (ASICs) and Micro Electro Mechanical System (MEMS) Devices.
 

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Australia, Netherlands keen to collaborate with ISRO
Top officials of the Australian and Dutch Space agencies expressed interest in collaborating and working closely with the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO).

 

sorcerer

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‘India’s first solar mission likely to launch next year’: ISRO


3-4 minutes


India’s first solar mission, which was pushed from early 2020 due to the Covid-19 pandemic, is likely to be launched in the third quarter of 2022, when the country’s second space observatory Xposat, aimed at helping astronomers study cosmic sources such as pulsars and supernova, will also be launched, senior officials from the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) said.

 

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