ISRO tests booster for Gaganyaan
- May 14, 2022
- Posted by: OptimizeIAS Team
- Category: DPN Topics
ISRO tests booster for Gaganyaan
- The Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) has successfully carried out the static test of the HS200 solid rocket booster, taking the space agency one more step closer to the keenly awaited Gaganyaan human spaceflight mission
- Designed and developed by the Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre (VSSC) in Thiruvananthapuram for over two years, the HS200 booster is the ‘human-rated’ version of the S200 rocket boosters used on the geosynchronous satellite launch vehicle Mk-III (GSLV Mk-III), also called the LVM3. The GSLV Mk-III rocket, which will be used for the Gaganyaan mission, will have two HS200 boosters that will supply the thrust for lift-off. The HS200 is a 20-metrelong booster with a diameter of 3.2 metres and is the world’s second largest operational booster using solid propellant.
- The successful completion of this test marks a major milestone for the prestigious human space flight mission of ISRO, the Gaganyaan, as the first stage of the launch vehicle is tested for its performance for the full duration,”
- Since Gaganyaan is a manned mission, the GSLV Mk-III will have improvements to increase reliability and safety to meet the requirements of ‘human rating.’
GSLV or Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle
- The GSLV or Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle is classified as a Medium-Lift Launch Vehicle (MLLV) and is rated to carry a payload of 8,000 kg to LEO or Low Earth Orbit. An MLLV is defined as a vehicle that can take a payload of 2,000-20,000 kg to LEO.
- The GLSV program, which started in the early 2000s, was initially expected to carry satellites to GTO (Geostationary Transfer Orbit). This vehicle is powerful enough to go to the Moon and is capable of taking humans to space.
- Of the three propulsion stages of the GSLV Mk-III, the second stage uses liquid propellant while the third is a cryogenic stage.
Currently, the vehicle comprises three stages:
First stage: Two S200 boosters are strapped on to the core of the rocket. These boosters are the third-largest solid fuel boosters ever developed and the second largest in service. Only the now-retired Space Shuttle and the Ariane rockets used larger boosters. The S200s each carry 207 tonnes of propellant and deliver 5,150 kN of peak thrust.
Second stage: By far the most under-rated motor on the GSLV, the second stage rockets, designated L110, are liquid fuel rockets based on the French Viking engine. This engine was, in turn, jointly developed by Indian and French scientists. The version we use in India is called the Vikas engine.These engines carry about 116 tonnes of fuel and generate about 1,600 kN of thrust at sea level.
Third stage: The engine that makes the GSLV a GSLV is the third stage motor. A record-setter in its own right, this cryogenic engine is classified as one of the most powerful upper stage motors in the world.
It develops a thrust of 200 kN in vacuum and can operate for 640 seconds. For fuel, it uses a mixture of oxygen and hydrogen, which are cooled to cryogenic temperatures (below -183ºC) and are thus in liquid form.
A cryogenic engine is extremely efficient as compared to a regular rocket motor, making it ideal for spacecraft. It’s also incredibly hard to develop, which is why only a handful of nations have succeeded in building one.
The average cost of a GSLV launch is estimated to be about Rs 400 cr or $62 mn, making it one of the cheapest launch vehicles in the world.
- Gaganyaan is a mission by the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO).
- Under the Gaganyaan schedule:
- Three flights will be sent into orbit.
- There will be two unmanned flights and one human spaceflight.
- The Gaganyaan system module, called the Orbital Module will have three Indian astronauts, including a woman.
- It will circle Earth at a low-earth-orbit at an altitude of 300-400 km from earth for 5-7 days.
- Crew module –spacecraft carrying human beings.
- Service module –powered by two liquid propellant engines.
- It will be equipped with emergency escape and emergency mission abort.
- GSLV Mk III, also called the LVM-3 (Launch Vehicle Mark-3,)the three-stage heavy lift launch vehicle, will be used to launch Gaganyaan as it has the necessary payload capability.
- Training in Russia:
- In June 2019, the Human Space Flight Centre of the ISRO and the Russian government-owned Glavkosmos signed a contract for the training, which includes Russian support in the selection of candidates, their medical examination, and space training.
- The candidates will study in detail the systems of the Soyuz manned spaceship, as well as be trained in short-term weightlessness mode aboard the Il-76MDK aircraft.
- The Soyuz is a Russian spacecraft. The Soyuz carries people and supplies to and from the space station.
- The Il-76MDK is a military transport plane specially designed for parabolic flights of trainee astronauts and space tourists.