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ISRO to develop reusable rockets, asked for collaboration

by Rishika Choudhury

Date & Time: Oct 31, 2022 8:00 PM

Read Time: 1 minute

As India plans to build its own space station by 2035, the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) has invited industry to join it in developing a reusable rocket capable of carrying heavier payloads into orbit.

ISRO Chairman S Somanath said the space agency was working on the design of the rocket, dubbed the Next-Generation Launch Vehicle (NGLV), and would like the industry to collaborate in its development.

“The intent is to bring industry along in the development process. All the money need not be invested by us. We want the industry to invest to create this rocket for all of us,” Somanath stated.

He said the rocket is planned to carry a 10 tonne payload in the Geostationary Transfer Orbit (GTO) or 20 tonnes to the low earth orbit.

Another ISRO official stated that the new rocket would be beneficial as India plans to build its own space station by 2035, as well as conduct deep space missions, human space flights, cargo missions, and place multiple communication satellites into orbit at the same time.

The NGLV is envisioned as a simple, robust machine designed for mass production that will reduce the cost of space transportation.

According to Somanath, the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV), ISRO's workhorse rocket, was developed in the 1980s and cannot be used to launch rockets in the future.

NGLV design to be completed soon

ISRO intends to have the NGLV design completed within a year and available to industry for production, with the first launch tentatively scheduled for 2030.

The NGLV could be a three-stage rocket powered by green fuel combinations such as methane and liquid oxygen or kerosene and liquid oxygen.

According to a presentation made by Somanath at a conference earlier this month, the NGLV could offer launch costs of $1900 (roughly Rs. 1,56,600) per kg of payload in the reusable form and $3,000 (roughly Rs. 2,47,200) per kg in the expendable format.

Also Read: ISRO is ready to launch 36 OneWeb satellites from Sriharikota

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