Sriharikota (Andhra Pradesh), Jan 5 (IANS) The successful launch of India’s heavier rocket – the geosynchronous satellite launch vehicle-D5 (GSLV-D5) – Sunday not only means the indigenous cryogenic engine has performed well but would also pave way for sizeable savings for the country in launch costs.
It also opens up a window to earn foreign exchange from launching heavier foreign satellites.
Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) chairman K. Radhakrishnan told IANS the country pays around $85-90 million (around Rs.500 crore) as launch fee for sending a 3.5-tonne communication satellite whereas the GSLV rocket costs around Rs.220 crore and the GSAT-14 launched Sunday around Rs.145 crore.
ISRO can send smaller communication satellites – weighing around two tonnes – till such time it gets ready an advanced GSLV variant that can lug satellites weighing around four tonnes.
Radhakrishnan also said ISRO has lined up several satellite launches for the current GSLV rocket version.
“We will be launching satellites GSAT-6, 7A and 9 using GSLV. We will also be using this rocket for our second Chandrayaan mission and for the launch of GISAT,” he said.