New Delhi, June 5: The Indian Space Research Organisation successfully launched its heaviest rocket, GSLV Mk-III D1, carrying 3,1360-kg communication satellite GSAT-19 at 5.28pm from the second launch pad at the Satish Dhawan Space Centre, Sriharikota on Monday.
The launch, a culmination of a long and arduous journey spanning more than three decades, will set the ball rolling for ISRO's future projects including Chandrayaan-2 and the manned mission.
ISRO launches GSLV Mark III carrying GSAT-19 communication satellite from Sriharikota, AP pic.twitter.com/MvoRhyD9To— ANI (@ANI_news) June 5, 2017
The mission is significant as the GSLV Mk III, that weighs equivalent to the weight of five fully-loaded Boeing Jumbo Jets or as much as 200 fully grown elephants, is the heaviest rocket to be launched from our own soil. Till now, ISRO had to depend on foreign launchers for communication satellites weighing more than 2,300 kg.
The mission would also augment India's communication resources as a single GSAT-19 satellite will be equivalent to having a constellation of six to seven of the older variety of communication satellites in space.
Prior to the launch, some engineers and scientists at ISRO were nervous as most first launches of India's rockets have ended in failure.
This success would help ISRO attract more foreign business in the lucrative heavier segment of the satellite business.The government has been promoting the home-grown space programme as a demonstration of low-cost technology.