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Why GSLV Mk-III launch is key to Gaganyan mission?

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Sriharikota, Nov 14: The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) would closely monitor the performance of GSLV Mark III rocket which would place GSAT-29 communication satellite in the orbit today. Many say that this could be the rocket that the ISRO may use for India first manned spaceflight program, Gaganyan.

GSLV Mark III is ISRO's heaviest rocket and is capable of introducing four-tonne class satellites into a geostationary transfer orbit.

A file photo

A manned space mission is very different from all other missions that ISRO has so far completed. For a manned mission, the key distinguishing capabilities that ISRO has to develop include the ability to bring the spacecraft back to Earth after the flight, and to build a spacecraft in which astronauts can live in Earth-like conditions in space.

[Two technologies key to ISRO's ambitious Gaganyan mission][Two technologies key to ISRO's ambitious Gaganyan mission]

ISRO also cannot rely on its workhorse PSLV. PSLV can carry payloads upto 2 tonnes, but a spacecraft carrying human beings is likely to weigh in excess of 5 to 6 tonnes. For this, ISRO has developed GSLV Mk-III which is a launch vehicle capable of carrying heavier payloads much further into the space.

The GSLV-MkIII-D2 is a three stage launch vehicle with two solid strap-ons, a liquid core stage and a cryogenic upper stage.

Today's launch would be the second flight for the GSLV Mark III rocket.

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