According to a senior official, the Indian space agency is working on a fleet of medium to heavy-lift rockets with a carrying capacity ranging from 4.9 tons to 16.3 tons.
When the rockets come into operation, ISRO can launch its own communication satellites and enter the global communication satellite launch market.
Typically, rockets eject the communication satellites into GTO. From GTO, the satellites will be taken to the geostationary orbit by firing their engines.
Kumar also said ISRO is working on upgrading Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle-Mk III (GSLV-Mk III), which can carry up to 4 tons to the Geo Transfer Orbit (GTO)
The five rockets are currently in the project report stage and would come into operation in the future, said N Sudheer Kumar, Director, Capacity Building Programme Office (CBPO), Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO). He spoke at the virtual International Space Conference and Exhibition, recently organised by the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII).
India uses Arianespace’s Ariane rocket to orbit its communication satellites weighing over 4 tons.
According to Kumar, ISRO is also working on upgrading the lifting capacity of GSLV-Mk III to 6 tons and 7.5 tons to GTO.
He said the 6-ton lift capacity would be achieved by miniaturising avionics, uprating its three stages/engines, structural mass optimisation, and other means. ISRO is on the verge of realising its semi-cryogenic engine fueled by pure kerosene that will soon power GSLV-Mk III so that the rocket can carry a 7.5-ton payload to GTO with an upgraded cryogenic engine.
** The above article has been published from a wire agency with minimal modifications to the headline and text.