The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) is launching the second developmental flight of its newest and smallest orbital-class rocket, the Small Satellite Launch Vehicle (SSLV), on February 10th, 2023 at 9.18 am (local time) from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre in Sriharikota, Andhra Pradesh.
ISRO has made several changes to the rocket’s sub-systems based on the lessons learned from its maiden launch on August 7, 2022, to ensure a flawless flight. Developmental flights provide a crucial opportunity for new rockets to showcase their real-world performance and prove their worthiness as dependable launchers. IIT Madras and ISRO to Train Indian Astronauts for Space Mission.
The SSLV, a three-stage launch vehicle powered almost entirely by solid fuel, is a simple and easy-to-assemble rocket compared to ISRO’s other launchers. It can be assembled by a handful of engineers and technicians in less than a week and is capable of launching 500kg payloads into orbits 500km above the earth’s surface.
The key features of the SSLV include its low cost, low turn-around time, flexibility in accommodating multiple satellites, launch on-demand feasibility, and minimal launch infrastructure requirements. During Friday’s mission, the SSLV will inject India’s EOS-7, a US-based Janus-1, and a student satellite AzaadiSAT-2 into a 450km circular orbit.
Despite facing a setback in its maiden launch, ISRO is confident in the capabilities of the SSLV and its potential to revolutionize the future of space launches with its low-cost and efficient approach.