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June 10-16, 2013 / Vol 32, No 23 / Hawai`i Island, USA

7 Jun 2013, 20:43 UTC
June 10-16, 2013 / Vol 32, No 23 / Hawai`i Island, USA
(200 words excerpt, click title or image to see full post)

India Set To Reignite GSLV, Advance Toward Human Spaceflight
Anticipation is building for the next launch of India’s Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle (GSLV) rocket set for July. After two consecutive failures and a lifetime success rate of only 60%, ISRO has taken 31 months to conduct thorough investigations and over 35 ground tests of the indigenous cryogenic third stage engine, including a simulated high-altitude test, in preparation for this return to flight. The 1,980-kg, 2.5-KW GSAT-14 communications satellite is the designated payload. If successful, India will immediately ramp up preparations for an experimental flight of the next generation GSLV Mark 3 as early as January 2014. This updated variant will double the lift capacity of the system to 4 tons and is the vehicle of choice for the future of the India human spaceflight program. ISRO is currently working with a budget of nearly US$2.2M to conduct pre-project studies and develop critical technologies toward this goal, including environmental control, spacesuit, reentry and crew escape system. The proposed total budget for development of the human program is US$2.3B, expected to begin no earlier than 2017. Success of the GSLV next month will greatly improve prospects for a 2014-2015 launch of the ...

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