ISRO increases carrying capacity of LVM3 rocket by 450kg

Chennai (IANS) Indian space agency has increased the carrying capacity of its LVM3 (GSLV MkIII) rocket by 450 kg with additional propellant loading of its cryogenic engine CE20, Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) said.

According to ISRO, the CE20 cryogenic engine indigenously developed for LVM3 has been subjected to successful hot test at an uprated thrust level of 21.8 tonne for the first time on November 9.

This will enhance the LVM3 payload capability up to 450 kg with additional propellant loading.

Currently, the LVM3 rocket has a capacity to carry four ton to geo transfer orbit and 10,000 ton low earth orbit.

The cryogenic upper stage of the LVM3 vehicle (C25 stage) is powered by a CE-20 engine working with liquid oxygen and liquid hydrogen (LOX-LH2) propellants combination.

The Indian space agency said the major modifications carried out on this test article compared to the previous engines was introduction of Thrust Control Valve (TCV) for thrust control.

In addition to this 3D printed LOX and LH2 turbine exhaust casings were inducted in the engine for the first time, ISRO said.

During this test the engine operated with about 20t thrust level for first 40s, then thrust level was increased to 21.8t by moving the thrust control valve.

ISRO said the engine and facility performance was normal and required parameters were achieved.

The LVM3 rocket is the one that is used by ISRO to launch third party satellites on commercial terms.

ISRO would launch another batch of 36 small satellites of UK based OneWeb in January 2023.

On October 23, the first batch of 36 satellites of OneWeb was put into orbit by the LVM3 rocket.

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