ISRO to test ground landing of India’s own Space Shuttle RLV

ISRO to test ground landing of India’s own Space Shuttle RLV

ISRO is planning to build RLV like United States’s Space Shuttle, to place satellites in orbit and return to land for the following missions.

This is probably going to cut down the satellite launch costs.

ISRO is likely going to test the landing capacities of Reusable Launch Vehicle (RLV) at some point in November or December 2020.

There are two Indian rockets in service, called Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) and Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle (GSLV). There is additionally a forthcoming Small Satellite Launch Vehicle (SSLV). All these are expendable ones.

“We are planning to test the Reusable Launch Vehicle’s landing in Chitradurga District in Karnataka. We want to do the test in November/December this year,” S. Somanath, Director of Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre (VSSC) stated.

As per the plans, the RLV will be lifted up by a helicopter and it will be released from the height of 4 kilometers.

When it is released by the helicopter, the RLV will glide and navigate towards the runway, and land on its own in an airfield in Chitradurga District by deploying its parachute, Somanath included.

As per ISRO, RLV Interface System (RIS) – for interfacing with helicopter – and Qualification Model of landing gear have been released.

The RLV will rise to orbit, remain there, re-enter and land on a runway like an aircraft. The technology has the difficulties of meeting the complexities of both – a rocket and an aircraft.

As indicated by Somanath, around 30-40 ISRO officials have to be taken to Chitradurga and will have to stay there for about 2 weeks.

In 2016, ISRO effectively tested RLV’s descent from a height of 65 km and its atmospheric re-entry at around Mach 5 (five times the speed of sound).

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