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Commercial Debut of ISRO's LVM3 on October 23

ISRO is all set for the commercial launch of its heaviest launch vehicle next Sunday.

Commercial Debut of ISROs LVM3 on October 23

Sentinel Digital Desk

SRIHARIKOTA: The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) is all set to use its heaviest rocket system the Launch Vehicle Mark 3 (LVM3) for commercial use. It will be used to launch 36 broadband satellites for the British startup OneWeb next Sunday.

"The launch of 'LVM3 - M2/OneWeb India-1 Mission' is scheduled at 0007 hours IST on October 23 (midnight of October 22), the Bengaluru-headquartered Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO)," mentioned in a statement. "Cryo stage, equipment bay (EB) assembly completed. Satellites are encapsulated and assembled in the vehicle. Final vehicle checks are in progress," it said.

The launch will be carried out from the spaceport in Sriharikota located in Andhra Pradesh. ISRO has completed several commercial launches successfully in the past, but this is the first time they will put their heaviest launching engine, the LVM 3 to use.

The Indian Space Research Organisation has launched innumerable satellites for a wide range of clients. Various generations of their Geosynchronous Satelite Launch Vehicles or GSLVs have been used for launching different satellites. And heaviest one to date is called the Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle Mark III or simply the Launch Vehicle Mark 3 or LVM3 in short.

The LVM3 is a three-stage satellite launch vehicle with two solid motor strap-ons, a liquid propellant core stage, and a cryogenic stage. This new rocket system is capable of launching a four-tonne class of satellites into a Geosynchronous Transfer Orbit (GTO).

Earlier this month, the space agency had mentioned that NewSpace India Limited (NSIL), a central public sector enterprise (CPSE) registered under the Department of Space and the commercial arm of the space agency had signed contracts for two launch services with the UK-based Network Access Associates Limited (OneWeb). This was for the launch of 36 OneWeb LEO (low earth orbit) broadband communication satellites on board ISRO's LVM3.

"It is the first LVM3-dedicated commercial launch on demand through NSIL. This contract with M/s OneWeb is a historic milestone for NSIL and ISRO, as LVM3, is making its entry into the global commercial launch service market," ISRO announced.

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