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India successfully launches Reusable Launch Vehicle (analysed form The Hindu, relevant for Prelims, GS III, Topic: Indigenous Technology, ISRO)

India successfully launched the first indigenously made Reusable Launch Vehicle (RLV), capable of launching satellites into orbit around earth and then re—enter the atmosphere.
It was launched from Sriharikota in Andhra Pradesh.

This is the first time ISRO has launched a winged flight vehicle, which glided back onto a virtual runway in the Bay of Bengal.

The making of the Indian space shuttle or RLV-TD has taken five years and the government has invested Rs. 95 crore in the project.

About winged flight vehicle:

The space shuttle after the launch flew to an altitude of 70 kilometres and then engaged in a free-gliding flight, that starts with an initial velocity five times that of sound. It then land on a stretch of water in the Bay of Bengal some 500 kilometres from Sriharikota.

Significance:

India’s  engineers believe the solution to reducing cost of launching satellites into orbit is to recycle the rocket or make it reusable.
Scientists at ISRO believe that they could reduce the cost by as much as 10 times if reusable technology succeeds, bringing it down to $2,000 per kg.

Highlights:

1.    Known as hypersonic flight experiment, it was about 10 minutes mission from launch to splashdown.

2.    RLV, being dubbed as India’s own space shuttle, is the unanimous solution to achieve low cost, reliable and on demand space access.

3.    RLV—TD is a series of technology demonstration missions that have been considered as a first step towards realising future technology goals like Two Stage To Orbit (TSTO) fully reusable vehicle.

4.    The RLV-TD will not to be recovered from sea during this experiment as the vehicle will disintegrate on impact with water.



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