In response to the increasing demand for small satellites, the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) has announced its decision to transfer its Small Satellite Launch Vehicle (SSLV) to the private sector. This move aims to enhance the capabilities and efficiency of satellite launches and cater to the evolving needs of the space industry. By involving the private sector, ISRO intends to foster innovation, encourage competition, and promote the growth of the space sector in India.
ISRO has successfully conducted two development flights of the SSLV rocket, which is designed to offer on-demand services for launching satellites weighing up to 500kg into low-earth orbit. The transfer of SSLV to the private sector is expected to further boost the commercial satellite launch services sector in India. It is projected that by 2025, this sector will contribute around $13 billion to the Indian economy. The involvement of the private sector in SSLV operations is anticipated to expedite the growth and development of the commercial space industry in India, leading to increased innovation, job opportunities, and economic benefits.
About Small Satellite Launch Vehicle (SSLV)
The Small Satellite Launch Vehicle (SSLV) is a small-lift launch vehicle developed by the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO). It is designed to launch small satellites into low Earth orbit (LEO).
The SSLV has a lift capacity of 500 kilograms to LEO. It is a three-stage solid-propellant launch vehicle, with a liquid propulsion-based Velocity Trimming Module (VTM) as a terminal stage. The SSLV is 34 meters tall and has a lift-off mass of 120 tonnes.
Key Features of the SSLV
- Low cost: The SSLV is designed to be a low-cost launch vehicle. It is expected to be significantly cheaper than other launch vehicles in its class.
- Flexibility: The SSLV is designed to be flexible. It can be used to launch a variety of small satellites, including CubeSats, nanosatellites, and microsatellites.
- Responsiveness: The SSLV is designed to be responsive. It can be launched on short notice, making it ideal for launching small satellites that require rapid deployment.
The significance of the SSLV is that it will provide a new launch capability for ISRO. The SSLV will be able to launch small satellites into LEO at a lower cost than other launch vehicles. This will make it more affordable for small satellite operators to launch their satellites into space.
The SSLV has already been successfully launched twice. The first launch was on August 7, 2022, and the second launch was on February 10, 2023. Both launches were successful, and the SSLV successfully placed its payloads into LEO.
The SSLV is a significant development for ISRO, and it is expected to play a major role in the future of India’s space program.
ISRO – FAQs
What is ISRO?
ISRO has how many types of launch vehicles?
Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) is a three-stage, solid-fuel launch vehicle used to launch satellites into low Earth orbit (LEO) and Sun-synchronous orbits (SSO). It is the workhorse of the Indian space program and has been used to launch over 150 satellites.
Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle (GSLV) is a four-stage, liquid-fueled launch vehicle used to launch satellites into geosynchronous transfer orbit (GTO). It is capable of launching heavier satellites than the PSLV and has been used to launch satellites such as the GSAT-6A and the INSAT-3DR.
A Small Satellite Launch Vehicle (SSLV) is a three-stage, solid-fueled launch vehicle used to launch small satellites into LEO. It is a new launch vehicle and has only been launched twice so far. However, it is expected to play a major role in the future of India’s space program, as it will be able to launch small satellites at a lower cost than other launch vehicles.