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ISRO is planning on building reusable rockets for the global marketYash Ranjan09/06/202215
Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) is planning on building reusable rockets for the global market, said the Chairman of ISRO and the Secretary of the Department of Space, Mr. S. Somnath. The world is relying on reusable rockets for reducing the cost of space missions. Reusable rockets significantly reduce the high cost associated with space missions. Hence, the decision of India to build and market reusable rockets will propel its space research to a whole new level. The chairman of ISRO, Mr. S. Somnath, was addressing the audience at the Bengaluru Space Expo 2022. During this, he mentioned the need to reduce the high cost associated with space launches. According to Mr. S. Somnath, as of now, the cost of launching 1kg of load into the earth’s orbit is around USD 10,000 to USD 15,000. Such high price reduces the frequency of space operations for many developing countries. Mr. Somnath further added that, if the launch rockets are reusable, this cost can easily be brought down to USD 5,000 to USD 1,000. Further Mr. Somnath unveiled ISRO's plan about creating reusable launch rockets. He stated that the next launch rocket, GSLV Mk III, will be reusable. He also talked about other newer technologies on which ISRO is working. ISRO recently tested a newer technology which includes an Inflatable Aerodynamic Decelerator (IAD). Inflatable Aerodynamic Decelerator (IAD) is a tech developed by ISRO that can successfully assist the rockets during reentry, allowing them to be reused for the following missions. The tech was successfully tested by ISRO’s Vikram Sarabhai Space Center. It was first used in the Rohini-300-sounding rocket or RH-300 Mk II. The IAD tech serves as a medium to reduce the rocket's speed as it travels through the atmosphere by increasing the drag created by air. IAD has created several new applications for its use. It can be used for the recovery of various stages of the rocket through its launch, or it can be used to land payloads on planets with atmospheres such as Mars and Venus. ISRO is trying to implement this new Inflatable Aerodynamic Decelerator into their rockets to create reusable rockets. ISRO will be partnering with NewSpace India Limited (NSIL), for this development. Mr. Somnath stated that as the development of reusable rockets is an idea, it will be working with the industries to bring this idea into reality. He further added that the ISRO will work with NSIL to create a range of commercially used reusable rockets. ISRO will handle the designing, engineering, and manufacturing of these reusable rockets alongside its industrial partners. This is a big step for the ISRO, which is expected to open new doors of opportunity for ISRO and India’s space research. ISRO has planned its reusable rockets to be extremely cost-effective, easily producible, and competitive with the existing reusable space technology. The production of these rockets will be done in India, which will be then supplied to the global market as a commercial product. ISRO has proposed that this development will take a few more years to complete this vision. It will provide enough time to retire the existing launch vehicles and the implementation of newly developed reusable rockets.