Need for engaging private research firms: ISRO Chairman

The Indian Space Research Organisation, which has planned to put three satellites into the orbit with its Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle before end of this year, will send its GSAT -14 with its indigenously developed Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle D-5 during mid-2012, Chairman, ISRO, K. Radhakrishnan has informed.

Speaking to reporters after inaugurating the two-day national conference on ‘Expanding frontiers in propulsion technology' at Liquid Propulsion Systems Centre (LPSC) in Mahendragiri in the district on Friday, Dr. Radhakrishnan said the ISRO, which had learnt a lot of highly valuable lessons from the unsuccessful flight of GSLV D-3 in April 2010, was working hard on the rectifying the problems to make the GSLV D-5 flight a resounding victory. GSAT–14 satellite would have C-band communication transponders.

Towards achieving self-reliance in the development of the Mark III engine for GSLV, the S-200 solid propellant motor would be subjected to static test, which would be the repeat of the successful test that was conducted in January 2010.

Moreover, the ISRO has planned to launch GSAT – 12, which will have extended C-band transponders, with its Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle during next month.

After launching Meghatropique satellite, an Indo – French joint venture, in September 2011, the ISRO will be concentrating on the launching of Microwave Remote Sensing Satellite – RISAT – 1 – during December this year.

“Our PSLVs will launch these satellites that will provide us clear and excellent pictures even though the sky is overcast,” Dr. Radhakrishnan said.

According to the ISRO chief, his prestigious testing centre at Mahendragiri had been adorned with one more most-modern facility – Thrust Chamber Test Facility – for testing the GSLV Mark III engine's cryogenic stage. “It will be ready for commissioning within next 60 days”.

Inaugurating the conference, Dr. Radhakrishnan stressed the need for engaging more private firms with adequate and state-of-the-art research and development facilities in ISRO's missions and the leading educational institutions as is being done in the United States and Russia.

He stressed the need for developing non-chemical, electro and ionic propellants, “which will have longer life and propel the satellite in its orbit for more period.”

Releasing the conference proceedings, Sathish Dhawan Space Centre Director M.C. Dathan hoped that the ISRO, with its highly committed and enthusiastic young workforce, would scale greater heights in the days to come.

Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre Director P.S. Veeraraghavan said due importance should be given for developing eco-friendly ‘green propellants' and for launching a payload with nuclear fission.

LPSC Director S. Ramakrishnan delivered the keynote address on ‘Expanding frontiers in propulsion technology'. Former LPSC director AE. Muthunayagam and Aeronautical Society of India secretary general Ashok Bhushan offered felicitations.