The Launch Vehicle Mark III (LVM3) is seen at the Vehicle Assembly Building at the Sriharikota Range (Shar), in Nellore district in Andhra Pradesh. (By Arrangement)
Nellore: The Indian Space Research Organisation (Isro) hopes to set a record on October 22, when it has scheduled to launch 36 satellites cumulatively weighing about 5,400 kg. This would be the heaviest payload ever to be launched into space from Indian soil.
The satellites would be launched by the LVM3 (Launch Vehicle Mark 3), which can carry 10,000 kg to Low Earth Orbit.
The LVM3, previously called the GSLV Mark III, is scheduled for launch early on October 22 from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre, Sriharikota Range (Shar) in Andhra Pradesh.
The launch of the 36 broadband communication satellites is part of a deal between NewSpace India Limited (NSIL), the commercial arm of Isro, and Network Access Associated Limited (OneWeb). The 36 satellites, each weighing about 150 kg, will be placed in the low earth orbit.
This contract is stated to be a historic milestone for NSIL and Isro as the LVM3 is making its entry into the global commercial launch service market. India's Bharti Group is a major shareholder in OneWeb.
Isro officials said two solid fuel strap-on boosters and a liquid core stage of LVM3 had been integrated at the second launch pad at Satish Dhawan Space Centre. The satellites have been assembled with the dispenser unit.
In the coming days, the integration of the cryogenic upper stage of the rocket and the integration of payload fairing will take place.