Yep, its exactly the way that headline reads. There was a time when India relied on the scientific capabilities of the United States to further its technological advancements, specially in space. But, in a few months from now, India is all-set to aid the US with its own scientific calibre, in yet another commercial satellite launch for ISRO’s private arm, Antrix.
The Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) will help the US to launch one of its satellites in the coming future. For ISRO, which had previously provided assistance to 19 countries by helping them launch satellites, it is for the first time that the country’s top space organization is lending a helping hand to the US.
The United States is furthering its plan to use India’s renowned and tested Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV), to launch one of its satellites into space.
US coming to India for a satellite launch may be a more common affair form this moment. While this has obviously to do with ISRO’s massively trustworthy launch capabilities, it is also a result of several failures, which NASA experienced at the hands of SpaceX, world’s only private commercial space company.
While SpaceX obviously is an ambitious project by Elon Musk, the company still hasn’t really been able to get that fool-proof launch tag, the most recent failure being its 7th Commercial Re-Supply (CRS) mission to the ISS, where its rather tested Falcon 9 launch rocket exploded minutes after launch.
ISRO has already launched 45 satellites for different nations, and is in the plans to launch another 28 in the next two years. With respect to home-grown satellites, ISRO will be launching the GSLV-Mark-II. It’s total capacity is 2.1-tonne and will help put a communication satellite into space by the end of this month.
Upgrading the current capacity to four tonnes will be the newly developed cryogenic engine for GSLV-Mark-III, which is scheduled for a launch by December 2016. It will be the same GSLV-Mark-III that has been burdened with the responsibility of carrying India’s manned mission to Moon, and later to Mars.