The Indian Space Research Organisation is gearing up for its first developmental flight, a new-generation compact rocket which is scheduled to be launched in the fourth quarter of the year 2021. Hence, according to the officials, the Indian space agency is all set to test the solid-fuel motor of the small rocket which is under development. The small rocket is SSLV (Small Satellite Launch Vehicle), an Indian Earth Observation satellite, which is being designed to have a carrying launch capacity of up to 500 kg satellite into 500 km low earth orbit (LEO).
Solid Fuel Engine for Small Rocket
The first static test of the first stage solid motor (SS1) of SSLV’s was not successful. The Bengaluru-headquartered space agency reported that there was a technical glitch with the engine’s nozzle.
The SSLV is a three-staged engine rocket, which is 34 meters tall with a lift-off mass of 120 tons, powered by solid fuel and a new first-stage engine for the rocket has to be built.
The process of testing works in this order:
– In order to prove its performance, the new motor has to be tested on the ground. Once the testing is done, and it proves to be successful, one more of the same configuration is tested again for acceptance. If both the motors are successful, no further ground test is required. The third motor of the same configuration will be accepted for the flight.
The role of SSLV
The Indian space agency has over the years released three fully operational rockets, including,
the four-stage/engine PSLV, two GSLV variants, GSLV-Mk II with a carrying capacity of 2.5 tonnes, and GSLV-MkIII with a payload capacity of four-ton. SSLV has been designed to meet launch-on-demand requirements in a cost-effective manner. Apart from other features, SSLV will have multiple satellite mounting options for nano, micro and small satellites.