The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) today successfully launched its latest communication satellite GSAT-29, which was put in its orbit by India’s heavy-lift rocket Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle (GSLV-Mk III).
The GSLV Mk III is the designated rocket for India’s first human spaceflight proposed for 2022. Today’s launch was a key test to the GSLV Mk III as it carried the GSAT-29 weighing 3,423 kg and placed it into Geo Transfer Orbit (GTO) just over 16 minutes into its flight.
The GSLV Mk III took flight as scheduled for 5.08 pm from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre at Sriharikota in Andhra Pradesh. This was the third flight undertaken by ISRO’s most powerful rocket.
The GSLV Mk III has so far undergone one experimental and one developmental flight and Wednesday’s flight was the second developmental flight for the rocket.
The GSAT-29 satellite carries communication transponders that will provide communication links in remote areas of India. The satellite will provide communication services to the Northeast region and Jammu and Kashmir to facilitate execution of Digital India initiatives, the ISRO has stated.
The GSLV Mk III is designed to launch satellites in the 4,000 kg category into space. India is currently dependent on European launchers to put heavy satellites in space. The GSAT Mk III is also the rocket designated for ISRO’s second moon mission Chandrayaan 2 scheduled for next year.