India on Monday successfully launched its indigenously developed Reusable Launch Vehicle (RLV-TD) from Sriharikota spaceport in Andhra Pradesh at around 7 in the morning.
India’s space agency, ISRO, said the mission was a complete success.
The Re-Usable Launch Vehicle – Technology Demonstrator, RLV-TD, that is ultimately aimed at putting satellites into orbit around earth and then re-enter atmosphere, was carried up on a solid rocket motor.
The nine-metre long rocket weighs approximately 11 tonnes. As per the pictures made available by ISRO, the reusable vehicle RLV-TD looks similar to the US space shuttle
The double delta-winged RLV-TD launched today is an experimental mode and its is almost 6 times smaller than the final version.
The 6.5 meter long RLV-TD has aeroplane like structure which weighs about 1.75 tons. The cost of this project is 95 crore rupees.
After launch from the Sriharikota spaceport, it glided back onto a virtual runway in the Bay of Bengal.
The vehicle re-entered the atmosphere after reaching a height of over 70 km. The mission, known as the hypersonic flight experiment, lasted about 10 minutes. Earlier, explaining the importance of the experimental RLV, ISRO Chairman Kiran Kumar said, it is essentially an attempt by India to bring down the cost of making infrastructure in space.
India’s top leadership has congratulated ISRO scientists on their feat.
President Pranab Mukherjee, Vice President Hamid Ansari and Prime Minister Narendra Modi congratulated the Indian Space Research Organization, ISRO for the successful test of the RLV-TD.
On his twitter profile, Prime Minister Modi said the launch of India’s first indigenous space shuttle RLV-TD is the result of the industrious efforts of the scientists of ISRO.
Launch of India's first indigenous space shuttle RLV-TD is the result of the industrious efforts of our scientists. Congrats to them.
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) May 23, 2016