India successfully launches its own 'space shuttle'

RLV-TD, being dubbed as India’s own space shuttle, getting ready for transportation to Sriharikota. Photo courtesy: ISRO
RLV-TD being transported to India’s space port at Sriharikota on the coast of the Bay of Bengal in Andhra Pradesh. Photo courtesy: ISRO
Reusable Launch Vehicle at the launch pad in Sriharikota. Photo courtesy: ISRO
A booster rocket with the RLV-TD lifted up at 7 a.m. from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre. Photo courtesy: ISRO
Known as hypersonic flight experiment, it was a 10-minute mission from liftoff to splashdown. Photo courtesy: ISRO
The total flight duration of the 6.5-metre long 'aeroplane'-like structure from launch to landing lasted about 770 seconds. Photo courtesy: ISRO
This successful experiment of ISRO is only a very preliminary step towards developing reusable launch vehicles. Photo: V. Ganesan
After the launch, M.C. Dathan, former director, Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre, Thiruvananthapuram, said:

India on Monday successfully launched the first technology demonstrator of indigenously made Reusable Launch Vehicle (RLV), capable of launching satellites into orbit around earth and reentering the atmosphere, from Sriharikota.

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