India’s First Private Space Vehicle Launchpad
- 01 Dec 2022
- 2 min read
Why in News?
Recently, Chennai-based space tech startup Agnikul Cosmos inaugurated India’s first private space vehicle launchpad at the Satish Dhawan Space Centre (SDSC) in Sriharikota.
- It was executed in support of the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) and IN-SPACe (Indian National Space Promotion and Authorization Center).
What is Agnikul’s Launchpad Facility?
- The facility has two parts: the Agnikul launchpad and the Agnikul mission control centre, which are four kilometres apart.
- The launchpad has been designed to accommodate and support liquid stage-controlled launches.
- Agnikul Cosmos is planning to launch its Agnibaan rocket from this launchpad.
- The launchpad is specifically built to address the need for ISRO’s range operations team to monitor key flight safety parameters during launches.
- Additionally, it has the ability to share data and other critical information with ISRO’s Mission Control Center.
What is Agnibaan?
- Agnibaan is a two-stage launch vehicle that is capable of taking payloads of up to 100 kilograms to a low-earth orbit around 700 kilometres from the surface of the Earth.
- It will be powered by the company’s 3D-printed Agnilet engines.
- Agnilet is the world’s first single-piece 3-D printed engine fully designed and manufactured in India and was successfully test-fired in early 2021, making Agnikul the first company in the country to test its engines at ISRO.
- The Agnilet rocket is a “semi-cryogenic” engine that uses a mixture of liquid kerosene and supercold liquid oxygen to propel itself.
- The engine is very complex and it functions at very high temperatures.