Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle Mk III

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Model of Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle III
Function Medium lift launch vehicle
Manufacturer ISRO
Country of origin India
Height 42.4 m (139 ft)
Diameter 4.0 m (13.1 ft)
Mass 630,000 kg (1,390,000 lb)
Stages 3
Payload to
10,000 kg (22,000 lb)
Payload to
4,000 kg (8,800 lb)-5,000 kg (11,000 lb)[1]
Launch history
Status In Development
Launch sites Satish Dhawan Space Centre, Andhra Pradesh, India
First flight Scheduled for 2014[2]
Booster Stage - S-200
Length 21.9 m (72 ft)[3]
Diameter 3.2 m (10 ft)[3]
Engines 2 Solid
Thrust 5,150 kN (525 tf) each[3][4][5]
Specific impulse 227 (sea level)
274.5 (vacuum)[3]
Burn time 130 sec[4]
Fuel Solid
Core Stage - L-110
Length 17 m (56 ft)[6]
Diameter 4 m (13 ft)[6]
Engines 2 Vikas
Thrust 1,400 kN (140 tf)[6][7]
Specific impulse 281 sec [6]
Burn time 200 sec[7]
Fuel UH 25/N2O4[8]
Upper Stage - C-25
Engines 1 CE-20
Thrust 200 kN (20 tf)[9]
Specific impulse 450 sec
Burn time 580 sec
Fuel LOX/LH2

The GSLV-III or Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle Mark III is a launch vehicle under development by the Indian Space Research Organisation. It is intended to launch satellites into geostationary orbit and as a launcher for an Indian crew vehicle. The GSLV MK-3 will feature an Indian cryogenic third stage and a higher payload capacity than the current GSLV.[10][11][12]


Development for the GSLV Mk III began in the early 2000s, with the first launch planned for 2009-2010.[13] Several factors have delayed the program, including the 15 April 2010 failure of the ISRO-developed cryogenic upper stage on the GSLV Mk II.[14]

A suborbital flight test of the GSLV Mk3 launcher, without its cryogenic third stage, is planned by end of 2014, and will be used to test a crew module on a suborbital trajectory.[15] The first orbital flight is planned to take place in 2016.[16] The first flight with a crew on board would take place after 2020.[14]

S-200 Static test[edit]

The S-200 solid rocket booster was successfully tested on 24 January 2010. The booster fired for 130 seconds and generated a peak thrust of about 500 tonnes. Nearly 600 health parameters were monitored during the test and indicated normal performance. A second successful static test was conducted on 4 September 2011.[4]

L-110 Static test[edit]

The Indian Space Research Organisation conducted the first static test of the L110 core stage at its Liquid Propulsion Systems Centre (LPSC) test facility at Mahendragiri, Tamil Nadu on 5 March 2010. Originally targeted for a full 200 second burn, the test was terminated at 150 seconds after a leakage in a control system was detected.[17] On 8 September 2010 ISRO successfully conducted a full 200 second test.[18]

Vehicle Description[edit]

Stage 1 - Solid boosters[edit]

The GSLV-III will use two S-200 solid motors, also designated Large Solid Boosters (LSB). Each booster will have a diameter of 3.2 metres, a length of 25 metres, and will contain 200 tonnes of propellant. These boosters burn for 130 seconds and produce a peak thrust of about 5,150 kilonewtons (525 tf) each.[3]

Stage 2 - Liquid motor[edit]

The core stage, designated L-110, will be a 4-meter diameter liquid-fueled stage containing 110 tonnes of propellant. It will be the first Indian liquid engine cluster design, and will use two improved Vikas engines, each producing about 700 kilonewtons (70 tf)[6][7] of thrust and burning UH 25 (75%UDMH, 25% hydrazine) and N2O4.[8] The improved Vikas engine will use regenerative cooling, providing improved weight and specific impulse, compared to earlier rockets.[19] The L-110 core stage will ignite 113 seconds after liftoff and burn for about 200 seconds.[7]

Stage 3 - Cryogenic upper stage[edit]

The cryogenic upper stage is designated the C-25 and will be powered by the Indian-developed CE-20 engine burning LOX and LH2, producing 20 tonnes-force (200 kN) of thrust. The C-25 will be 4 metres (13 ft) in diameter and 8.2 metres (27 ft) long, and contain 25 tonnes of propellant.[20]

This engine is slated for completion and testing by 2015, it will then be integrated with the C-25 stage and be put through a series of tests. The first C-25 stage will be used on the GSLV MK-III D-1 mission in early 2017. This mission will put in orbit the GSAT-19E communication satellite.[21] Work on the C-25 stage and CE-20 engine for GSLV Mk-III upper stage was initiated in 2003, the project has been subject to many delays due to problems with ISRO's smaller cryogenic engine, the CE-7.5 for GSLV MK-II upper stage.

Payload fairing[edit]

The payload fairing will have a diameter of 5 metres (16 ft) and a payload volume of 100 cubic metres (3,500 cu ft).[1]

Scheduled launches[edit]

Flight Launch date/time (UTC) Variant Launch Pad Payload Payload Mass Note(s)
X1 December 2014 Mk III Second Crew Module (Boilerplate) kg Sub-orbital development test flight[22][23][24]
E1 Late 2015-Early 2016 Mk III Second GSAT-19E kg Orbital first operational flight[25][21]

Comparable rockets[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "The GSLV-III". Indian Space Research Organisation. 2009-12-07. Retrieved 2012-11-23. 
  2. ^ "Now, ISRO Well on Course to Test Giant Rocket GSLV Mk-III". Retrieved 18 February 2014. 
  3. ^ a b c d e ISRO Press Release: S200 First Static Test (S-200-ST-01)
  4. ^ a b c "Isro successfully tests world's 3rd largest solid booster". dna. Retrieved 4 October 2014. 
  5. ^ "India to test world's third largest solid rocket booster". Science and Technology Section. The Hindu News Paper. 2009-12-07. Retrieved 2009-12-07. 
  6. ^ a b c d e "GSLV Mk3". Space Launch Report. Retrieved 23 October 2014. 
  7. ^ a b c d "L110 test to follow S200". IndianSpaceWeb. Retrieved 15 October 2014. 
  8. ^ a b "ISRO tests Vikas engine". The Hindu. Retrieved 15 October 2014. 
  9. ^ "LPSC Handouts at Aer India-2009". Specifications of CE-20. Liquid Propulsion Systems Centre. 2009-03-13. Retrieved 2009-08-29. 
  10. ^ "Indian Space Research Organisation preparing for three more PSLV launches". English: The Hindu. 2011-04-29. Retrieved 15 July 2011. 
  11. ^ [1][dead link]
  12. ^ "GSLV MkIII, the next milestone : Interview: K. Radhakrishnan". Print edition : February 7, 2014. Retrieved 30 January 2014.  Check date values in: |date= (help)
  13. ^ "India’s GSLV Mk-3 First Flight Pushed Back to April 2014". 2013-04-05. Retrieved 2013-04-28. "The launcher was initially expected to become operational by 2010/2011 with first flight in 2009-10." 
  14. ^ a b "India's GSLV Mk-3 First Flight Pushed Back to April 2014". Sawfnews. 4 April 2013. Archived from the original on 10 April 2013. 
  15. ^ "ISRO inches closer to manned mission". 2014-01-10. Retrieved 2014-01-10. "We will be checking the crew capsule for all parameters." 
  16. ^ "Now, ISRO Well on Course to Test Giant Rocket GSLV Mk-III". The New Indian Express. Retrieved 4 October 2014. 
  17. ^ "ISRO successfully conducts static testing of new age rocket". The Hindu. Retrieved 4 October 2014. 
  18. ^ ISRO Press Release:Successful Static Testing of L 110 Liquid Core Stage of GSLV - Mk III
  19. ^ "Space Transportation". GSLV - Mk III - Status of CE-20. Indian Space Research Organisation. 2009-07-15. Retrieved 2009-09-15. 
  20. ^ "Space Transportation". GSLV - Mk III - Status of CE-20. Indian Space Research Organisation. 2009-07-15. Retrieved 2009-09-05. 
  21. ^ a b Anil Wanvari. "India has 833 private TV channels". Retrieved 4 October 2014. 
  22. ^ "GSLV MkIII to launch Isro’s next mission". Hindustan times. 1 July 2014. Retrieved 1 July 2014. 
  23. ^ "India cracks cryogenic jinx as GSLV takes off". Retrieved 4 October 2014. 
  24. ^ "Mars conquered, Isro gears up for more". Hindustan Times (New Delhi). 24 September 2014. Retrieved 2014-10-01. 
  25. ^ "GSLV-D5 Twin may be Launched This Year". The New Indian Express. Retrieved 4 October 2014. 

External links[edit]