PSLV-C36 is the 38th flight of the PSLV series, and the space agency is not sitting back on the success of its indigenous effort. It is readying for two more launches – GSLV-Mark III launch and then the PSLV-C37. GSLV-Mark III flight will have the capacity to launch heavier satellites of the 3-ton category. ISRO is presently relying on the Ariane launch vehicle of the European Space Agency to launch its heavier satellites. ISRO, after a long and arduous journey, was able to master the cryogenic rocket technology and the GSLV-Mark III is the culmination of the efforts.
Vikram Sarabhai Space Center director K. Sivan said that the successful launch of PSLV-C36 also marks the coming of the age of the NavIC satellite navigation system, Vikram processor from the indigenous semiconductor labs and the indigenous lithium ion battery.
The GSLV Mark III will feature the indigenous cryogenic engine and it is a brute of a rocket which will send the 3.2 tonnes GSAT-19E communication satellite. The PSLV-C37 is akin to PSLV-C36 but will have a new configuration. It will be carrying some microsatellites along with its two main payloads. The satellites will be from an array of domestic and international institutions. The GSLV-Mark III will be a developmental flight with indigenous technology.
The payload of GSLV vehicle will be employing the latest spacecraft which includes experiments in the electrical propulsion system, a Li-ion battery and locally assembled bus bars for power distribution. The satellites will also feature the geostationary radiation spectrometer payload (GRASP) to understand the behavior of charged particle and the effects of space radiation on spacecraft and electronic components.
ISRO had come a long way from the days when its first sounding rockets were transported on a bicycle. Today it is planning deep space forays to Mars and Moon. It is rubbing shoulders with major Space-faring nations who once denied technology transfer and are today only eager to partner ISRO.