Indian Space Program Discussion

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby Singha » 14 Apr 2010 20:00

tomorrow is the day.

DD will surely cover this event.

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby shiv » 14 Apr 2010 20:15

Well let's hope thing go OK. The engine will need to have 3-4 successful launches to prove it. Tomorrow is only no 1

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby Rahul M » 14 Apr 2010 23:29

what time is the launch ?

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby KrishG » 14 Apr 2010 23:30

^^^ 4:27 pm IST (1057 UTC)

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby Rahul M » 14 Apr 2010 23:31

thx krish.

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby Nalla Baalu » 15 Apr 2010 00:55

The engines that are eventually mated to the launch vehicles, are they ground-tested (fired) for part or whole of their mission durations or do they come right off the manufacturing-line (after mandatory QC checks) for integration?

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby kasthuri » 15 Apr 2010 01:40

http://www.ndtv.com/news/india/isros-big-leap-the-gslv-launch-20005.php

ISRO chief on India's big leap

We have with us, Dr. K. Radhakrishnan, Chairman of the Indian Space Research Organization giving his first ever interview at ISRO's rocket port on the eve of a big launch for India where-in India would be launching the Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle- a landmark launch indeed for ISRO.

Dr. Radhakrishnan is a man of fine tastes- a Kathakalli dancer, a devotional music singer, and also, an engineer par excellence.

Q: Dr. Radhakrishnan, why is this launch of the Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle such a big deal?

A: See for the first time we are testing the indigenously developed Cryogenic engine and stage which is an essential part of the Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle.

Q. But what is the big deal about it? You have had so many launches here, why should this one be a landmark for people?

A: See, this is the culmination of 18 years of research and development by our engineers before we have achieved this. Cryogenics is a very complex technology- you deal with fluids at a very low temperature; and there is a high temperature, then combustion takes place so you have to manage this temperature regime.

Q. Cryogenic technology immediately brings us back to almost 2 decades ago, when Russia I believe denied us technology because America put pressure on them because of the Missile Technology Control Regime. Now is that correct? Were we really denied technology?

A: The early days the plan was that we buy the engine and stage, and then we also acquire the technology but that did not materialize. Then what we did was that the ISRO and the country took a bold step that we will develop it internally. And in 1994 the government gave us the approval for going ahead as a project about 350 crores.

Q. Yes, but it has taken you almost 16- 17 years after the technology was denied. This is not ISRO! ISRO normally does things very quickly. Why did it take you so long?

A. ISRO is ISRO. It is a great team but it's the technology that is very complex.

Q. So was it the materials which gave you trouble?

A. It is material, it is handling of these fluids, there are several such complexities.

Q. And this technology denial that happened did this come as a blessing in disguise for you?

A. Anything which happens is for the good. Since it was not available, we took a bold decision and with full determination we got it. That's how today we are the sixth in the world to have this cryogenic engine technology.

Q. So will this help us in breaking into the commercial launcher market because, not just technology denial, at that point when this technology was denied, it was also believed that the U.S. was trying to put pressure on us so that we do not compete with them in the launcher market. Is there any sense in that?

A. What this provides us or for the country is that we can build the GSLV with our own technology, our own materials, by our own people. That is the kind of infrastructural competence that we have developed for building the own launching vehicles.

Q. But it almost looks like a Russian engine...

A. See cryogenics is a liquid Oxygen and liquid Hydrogen. It is a staged combustion cycle that is there. But we have realized it, the Indians have designed it, the Indians have built it, and 75 percent of the materials are from India that is used.

Q. So it is not reverse engineered?

A. Absolutely.

Q. Because it is really one is to one so how do you say it is not reverse engineered? How can you make people believe that you did not copy the Russian design?

A. It is not one is to one. But if you see the specifications of putting in at that class of the satellite if you work out what is the velocity that needs to be added by the upper stage of the engine- same number you have to provide. So whether it is a Russian engineer designing or Indian engineer designing, it is to the same specification.

Q. We did not get any design from the Russians or any plan...?

A. Not on this.

Q. Nothing? So you really had to work from scratch on this?

A. Basics are known from there you design, you build, but yes a few some materials had to be import it.

Q. Now on this particular launch on the eve of it we are talking, we are also carrying a fine satellite to be placed in the orbit. Is it an experimental satellite? What are the experiments that you are doing?

A. GSAT-4 which is flying on this GSLV-D3 is an advanced technology communication satellite. Advanced in the sense that for the first time we are seeing the use Ka- band transponders that is a regenerative payload. The second is a payload to augment the GPS system which is called GAGAN. And for the first time we are using in this new electric propulsion. So far we were using chemical propulsion for the station keeping of the satellite throughout its life. This time we have used electric propulsion.

Q. First time you are using that ...

A. Yes, which is a very efficient system.

Q. So this is largely an experimental launch?

A. True

Q. It is a landmark experiment. Should- if something goes wrong will you have very long faces or we can you live with that?

A. See the track record of ISRO is the resilience is very high. We always come back.

Q. Hopes are very high that everything will go right. You have done the best you can- both for the satellite and for the launch?


A. We do our best.

Q. Hope for the best?

A. Yes

Q. And work for the best?

A. Certainly

Q. Dr. Radhakrishnan you explained to us the cryogenic engine, the G-SAT technology. Now let's come back to the technology denial and what implications are there for this particular launch in the world launcher market? Will this mark India's forceful entry into the world launcher market which is a several billion dollar affair?

A. India has a niche in the world launcher market for example; using our own PSLV we have already done two dedicated commercial launches. We are also launching on PSLV, some small satellites as co-passengers. This is already on. If we have GSLV, our first priority is to meet the national target. A small percentage could certainly be used for the international market. And that also gives you a benchmarking where you stand in terms of technology, competence, capability with respect to the rest of the agencies.

Q. Can you tell me more about our costs- are our costs comparable? Are we cheaper than other launchers in this class, are we more expensive, or do we hide the costs?

A. The independent study by an agency in the country showed that our costs were far less as compared to the other agencies. Coming to this GSLV the vehicle cost is 180 crores or about 175-180 crores. The satellite that is flying GSAT-4 cost about 150 crores. Now if you put such a satellite into the orbit, you would be paying anything- double. That is the kind of scenario on cost. Our engineering costs are far as compared to what many other players in the world.

Q. So if I understand what you are saying is, the Indian costs are half of what the international market is.

A. About..

Q. But you are not paying any insurance on this so that takes a huge chunk away. When you factor that in, what happens?

A. See for the Indian launchers we do not take insurance because again the Indian insurance company will be paying for that.

Q. But when you factor that in, what happens to the cost- benefit ratio?

A. No that will be, of course we are still...

Q. You are still above half of the cost?

A. Half to 75 percent depending upon what we are comparing with.

Q. So other nations need to worry that India is on the verge of entering the global launcher market?

A. I won't say that. See, if you see the world launch market we have a niche of the smaller satellites- not for the heavier ones.

Q. You also have for the first time, I am told, both rocket pads occupied. And people say that you are a very hard task master. You have made ISRO work very hard. PSLV and GSLV will be launched within weeks of each other. Is it really the first time?

A. It is not that I am a hard task master- ISRO is a great team. It does its work with devotion, dedication, and we have today two launch vehicles sitting on the launch pads of Sriharikota. One is with the satellite, the other is in the final testing phase at Bangalore and we would get it soon- like couple of days. And this is the way we want to do in the rest of the year. We have ten satellites to be launched; we have eight launch vehicles getting ready for launch till March 2011.

Q. You say you are not a hard task master but you are a dancer- so are you making people dance to your tunes?

A. It is for them to say (smiles)

Q. It is for the ISRO community to say? But that is what some people say. Is that justified?

A. It might be true.

Q. Will you make them work harder?

A. They do work. I do not need to make them work.

Q. This GSLV for which you will have this landmark launch is also going to be used for inter-planetary missions. What is likely to happen on that front?

A. See when you talk about planetary missions, first and foremost for the moon- Chandrayaan-2 we are planning a satellite, the mass of which will be almost 80 per cent more than Chandrayaan-1. So we will not be able to use PSLV for that. We need to have GSLV which is the first requirement.

Q. You also have studies done on the Human Space Flight Programme. Now which of the launchers are you going to use for the human space flight programme?

A. Finally we will be looking at the GSLV mark III as the human rated vehicle for taking our Indians to the orbit. But there are several steps before that. We need to have unmanned flight testing of the crew module- that is the new one that is going to be worked upon. So our plans initially in the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) we will test the crew module. That should happen in four year's time. Subsequently in the GSLV we will go through with the unmanned flight testing- that should happen in the next six years. And by the seventh year we should be there with our own human rated GSLV mark III, taking two Indians.

Q. We are sitting here on India's rocket port at Sriharikota. So when can exactly Indians hope to have an Indian in space from Indian soil, using an Indian rocket?

A. Seven years from now. We need the following: one we need to have the Human rated launch vehicle GSLV mark III. Second one, we need to have a mission control center, we need to have the launch complex with all the necessary modifications to handle the human being. We need to have the astronauts trained, and the new technology the crew model environmental control and support system and the flight suit on which work has started already. So seven years from now.

Q. `Now' means what? Because now is an ambiguous term.

A. Now means when the serious efforts on the project starts. As of now what we have is a pre-project study understanding what is human launch. Now we have a project report which gives the overall plan of the seven years. We are doing that in phases. The first phase that is to put the unmanned crew module; service module in the PSLV four years from now. We expect that the government will give us approval in a couple of months. We are at it.

Q. In a couple of months you hope to have the approval?

A. Yes.

Q. Shall we look forward to a 15th of August announcement?

A. Yes, even before that.

Q. Even before that?! That is fairly big news that you are giving then. We can hope to have the announcement of the human space flight programme extremely soon.

A. Yes we are optimistic, we work for that.

Q. The government is satisfied?

A. Yes we went through an exercise in the year 2009. The government had a team of very eminent experts looking at it from various angles- whether India needs to get it, whether India can do it, and if we do it, what are the benefits? And in that process are we compromising our societal focus. This has been done and the convincing answer is, yes we need to go ahead in this area that is put two Indians in an orbit around the Earth in the next 6-7 years.

Q. How much will it cost us?

A. This total programme is about 12,400 crore Indian rupees, the first phase of which would be a small one.

Q. 12,400 crore rupees is a lot of money?

A. Yes, 12,400 crore Indian rupees over seven years involve setting up of several facilities which are there for a long number of years. Launch pads, the mission control center, astronaut training center- these are all assets on the ground. What goes in the orbit will be about three to four thousand crores.

Q. Radhakrishnan sahib, we still have 400 million people in India living below the poverty line and you are hoping for the government to foot a 12 and a half crore rupee human space flight programme? Can you keep your hand on your heart and say this is the best expenditure that you can do?

A. Let me just recall, 46 years ago the country decided to get into the space programme. The same questions were asked at that time. The main focus was that we should use it for the common man. And today, after 46 years we see that we have given back to the common man and the country much-much more than what has been put into the space programme. This is the study by the independent agency. In terms of the direct benefits accruing from the remote sensing satellite, the communication satellites. So when this program is proved in the human space flight with the long term vision that we have, 30- 40 years from now, probably you could have a new source of energy. You will have several technologies which will be giving benefit to the other sectors in the economy. So these are things to be seen. We have a broad understanding of what are those areas which are important.

Q. So you are not playing with as they say 'toys for big boys'? You are asking for something which at the end of the day, the country would be happy having spent? Is that a fair assessment?

A. We are talking about something that is a logical step- a step that we can certainly do with our today's capability that will give us immense benefits- tangible, intangible and also strategic in the future. And we will be still having our front ranking position in the world comity in space. Today, if you take every other space portfolios, we are there. In space applications everyone says that India is a role model. In satellite launch vehicle technology, we are there in one of the six. In space science we are there- in planetary exploration we are there with Chandrayaan. Human space flight is one area we have not entered and this would take us there.

Q. You found water on the moon, plus you have also helped in many places in India to find water for the poorest of the poor. In all this next.. looking away from the earth, human space flight- will you forget the Aam Aadmi?

A. This water on the ground- on the Earth is for the Aam admi. The farmer of the country is the beneficiary of the Indian space programme. The fisherman of the country is a beneficiary of the Indian space programme.

Q. So the Aam admi is on your horizon- you are not forgetting him.

A. Aam aadmi is our first priority. Whatever we do, whatever decision we take, our first touch stone is how does it benefit the aam aadmi today or tomorrow.

NDTV: Thanks a lot Dr. K. Radhakrishnan for speaking to us.
Last edited by kasthuri on 15 Apr 2010 02:14, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby PratikDas » 15 Apr 2010 02:08

kasthuri wrote:
ISRO chief on India's big leap

We have with us, Dr. K. Radhakrishnan, Chairman of the Indian Space Research Organization giving his first ever interview at ISRO's rocket port on the eve of a big launch for India where-in India would be launching the Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle- a landmark launch indeed for ISRO.

Dr. Radhakrishnan is a man of fine tastes- a Kathakalli dancer, a devotional music singer, and also, an engineer par excellence.
...

This is a really strange interview... it almost reads like a North Korean government communique. There seems to be some pretend cross-examination through some questions and then the very next question seems to spoon feed an opportunity for an audio bite in support of ISRO's greatness.

Don't get me wrong. I really want this to succeed and I wish everyone at ISRO the very best. You deserve it. But could we please have the pats on the back after the launch?
Last edited by SSridhar on 15 Apr 2010 05:38, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Pratik Das, I have edited your post to remove unwanted references. Please mind your language.

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby kasthuri » 15 Apr 2010 02:18

PratikDas wrote:This is a really strange interview... it almost reads like a North Korean government communique.


If not the entire interview, initial set of questions look orchestrated.

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby PratikDas » 15 Apr 2010 02:23

Marten wrote:
PratikDas wrote:Don't get me wrong. I really want this to succeed and I wish everyone at ISRO the very best. You deserve it. But could we please have the pats on the back after the launch?

Not getting you wrong, but whether or not the launch is successful, it sure doesn't qualify to be called a bloody one. Your language sure is petty. WTF does Kathakalli dance mean and how is it relevant to this thread?

Did you read the interview?

Added later: I've been in Australia for a very long time. We use the word "bloody" in tourism ads to welcome people to Australia. The word is used here as a substitute for the word "damn". Here is proof: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rn0lwGk4u9o
Last edited by SSridhar on 15 Apr 2010 08:21, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Reference edited

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby kasthuri » 15 Apr 2010 02:40

Is 19 years (or even 15 years) really justified in coming up with this technology? Can any expert here clarify? I understand that it is a complex technology, but given that there is already knowledge in the area, does it usually take this long? If reverse engineering would have been fast, why not do it?
Please note that I don't want to undermine ISRO's great efforts in getting this up and running, I just want to understand the delay if it is attributed to several factors.Or may be it takes this long in general...

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby Anant » 15 Apr 2010 02:57

It's really really really hard ok. No one was sitting on their @$$es. It's like curing cancer or AIDS. I mean HIV/AIDS has been known atleast for 25+ years in earnest. Why isn't there a vaccine? We have vaccines for other viruses. I am arguing by analogy here. Cryogenic tech, once again, is VERY difficult to master. Count on two hands how many countries world wide have it. Couple this with the fact that when country A has it they don't want you country B to have it, since it ruins their club membership. Tough right? And to you people who pan the interview. Give it a break. The journo was trying to put a human side to an otherwise brilliant engineer. Nothing wrong with that. I personally do like to see people exposed in non unidimensional ways. Was he supposed to ask him what his favorite math proofs were? Duh. Let's just pray the launch is successful so I can drink my bottle of chilled champagne. Till then, relax, no worry, have curry.

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby PratikDas » 15 Apr 2010 03:05

Anant wrote:Give it a break. The journo was trying to put a human side to an otherwise brilliant engineer. Nothing wrong with that. I personally do like to see people exposed in non unidimensional ways. Was he supposed to ask him what his favorite math proofs were? Duh. Let's just pray the launch is successful so I can drink my bottle of chilled champagne. Till then, relax, no worry, have curry.

Forgive me for expecting a professional interview when a very rare opportunity to do so is at hand. I don't need to know which math proofs he likes best. I would like to know what the critical turning point was in the cryogenic project, which was almost two decades in the making, when they started seeing the light at the end of the tunnel. Is that too much to ask? Wouldn't you like to know too? I hope your answer is yes. Was it asked? No.

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby Anant » 15 Apr 2010 03:09

There's a difference between an interview for lay people v. an interview for people who are in that field. If you want those answers, get some journo from a rocketry journal. Plenty exist for my field. I am sure they exist for rocketeers and rocket scientists. Have them ask him and I am sure he'd be happy to answer. And you might get more mileage of it. Personally, while that interests me tangentially, I'm more impressed that they got their goals accomplished (knock on wood) withstanding technology transfers and outright denials. I am not a rocket scientist nor do I preface to be an arm chair one but I have had the chance to work with someone who was and I once had asked him in passing, what was the hardest thing about rocket tech. He said, without a doubt, cryogenic engines. So I take him at his word. In the meantime, have fun dissecting the interview.

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby PratikDas » 15 Apr 2010 03:15

Anant wrote:There's a difference between an interview for lay people v. an interview for people who are in that field.

That's a fair comment, but I don't need to be a rocket scientist to want to know more. Plenty of journals exist for my field too!
Anant wrote:In the meantime, have fun dissecting the interview.

That wasn't necessary. I don't remember ridiculing anything you've said.

Anyway, back to the launch.

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby Anant » 15 Apr 2010 03:40

Hi Pratik,

My point wasn't to ridicule you and if it came across as such, I humbly apologize. What I meant to say was that please do pick apart the interview and if you glean anything from it let me or us know. I am a rank amateur at all of this and learn from others. I meant no disrespect to you. I still think the type of interviews people give are largely dependent on who is asking the question and who the intended audience is. Nothing more or less than that. Have a great day/night and let's all celebrate tomorrow. Best to the ISRO folks.

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby VenkataS » 15 Apr 2010 03:52

Carl_T wrote:Damn, I thought the manned flight was going to be in 2015. But nothing wrong in waiting as long as we get there!


As ISRO chief was saying it will take 7 years from the approval of funding. I think that the expectation earlier on was that it would be approved by 2008/09 and take 6-7 years after that and hence the initial 2015 date.

The program has not been approved yet. Radhakrishnan is hoping that it would be approved by Aug this year and hence 2017 might be realistic date for now.

However questions such as the one below by the journalist aren't going to be helpful in speeding up the approval process for these kinds of missions:

kasthuri wrote:Q. Radhakrishnan sahib, we still have 400 million people in India living below the poverty line and you are hoping for the government to foot a 12 and a half crore rupee human space flight programme? Can you keep your hand on your heart and say this is the best expenditure that you can do?

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby PratikDas » 15 Apr 2010 03:55

Thanks, Anant.

Moving on... here's a very interesting article that's come out today.

N. Gopal Raj: The long road to cryogenic technology

The Russian design involves a complicated ‘staged combustion cycle' to increase the engine efficiency. Hydrogen is partially burnt with a little oxygen in a gas generator. The hot gases drive a turbopump and are then injected at high pressure into the thrust chamber where the rest of oxygen is introduced and full combustion takes place. Before going to the gas generator, the incredibly chilly liquid hydrogen is used to cool the thrust chamber where temperatures rise to over 3,000 Celsius when the engine is fired.

Reproducing the Russian design meant ISRO engineers also learning to deal with new materials and manufacturing methods. A process, known as vacuum brazing needed to make the engine's thrust chamber, for instance, took considerable time to master. Then there was the challenge posed by the powerful turbopump that rotates at a tremendous speed in order to send up to 18 kg of propellants every second into the thrust chamber. It must do so in the face of a sharp temperature gradient, with hot gases at over 5000 Celsius driving the turbine, which then spins the pumps for freezing-cold propellants.

Steps were also taken so that materials required for the engine and stage could be made within the country.

The Indian cryogenic engine is produced by Godrej and the Hyderabad-based MTAR Technologies working together as a consortium. Instead of ISRO first mastering the technology and transferring it to industry, the two companies were involved from the start and even the early prototypes were built by them. Failure on their part was not an option and the space agency had to make sure that these companies succeeded.


Added later: This article is a gold mine of information... bad tests followed by overwhelmingly successful tests, legacy of the Russian engine, problems with the initial models of the purchased Russian cryo engines, lessons learnt for the Indian design, how the last two (unused) Russian cryo engines have more thrust than the previous ones, and the list goes on.... Must read for the enthusiast!

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby SSridhar » 15 Apr 2010 05:32


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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby disha » 15 Apr 2010 08:08



I am glad that you reproduced this article. Even though some of the questions seem contrived, they are to send a message and what better message than right from the Chairman. And remember this is his first interview. My takeaways below:

ISRO chief on India's big leap

Q. But what is the big deal about it? You have had so many launches here, why should this one be a landmark for people?

A: See, this is the culmination of 18 years of research and development by our engineers before we have achieved this. Cryogenics is a very complex technology- you deal with fluids at a very low temperature; and there is a high temperature, then combustion takes place so you have to manage this temperature regime.

...

Q. Yes, but it has taken you almost 16- 17 years after the technology was denied. This is not ISRO! ISRO normally does things very quickly. Why did it take you so long?

A. ISRO is ISRO. It is a great team but it's the technology that is very complex.

...

Q. And this technology denial that happened did this come as a blessing in disguise for you?

A. Anything which happens is for the good. Since it was not available, we took a bold decision and with full determination we got it. That's how today we are the sixth in the world to have this cryogenic engine technology.

[My take: Even the bloody aussies do not have it]

...

Q. But it almost looks like a Russian engine...

A. See cryogenics is a liquid Oxygen and liquid Hydrogen. It is a staged combustion cycle that is there. But we have realized it, the Indians have designed it, the Indians have built it, and 75 percent of the materials are from India that is used.

Q. So it is not reverse engineered?
A. Absolutely
.

Q. Because it is really one is to one so how do you say it is not reverse engineered? How can you make people believe that you did not copy the Russian design?

A. It is not one is to one. But if you see the specifications of putting in at that class of the satellite if you work out what is the velocity that needs to be added by the upper stage of the engine- same number you have to provide. So whether it is a Russian engineer designing or Indian engineer designing, it is to the same specification.

[My point: Whether it is a US designer or Indian designer, a rocket as a nose cone on front and a burning end on the rear]

Q. We did not get any design from the Russians or any plan...?

A. Not on this.


....

Q. Radhakrishnan sahib, we still have 400 million people in India living below the poverty line and you are hoping for the government to foot a 12 and a half crore rupee human space flight programme? Can you keep your hand on your heart and say this is the best expenditure that you can do?

A. Let me just recall, 46 years ago the country decided to get into the space programme. The same questions were asked at that time. The main focus was that we should use it for the common man. And today, after 46 years we see that we have given back to the common man and the country much-much more than what has been put into the space programme. This is the study by the independent agency. In terms of the direct benefits accruing from the remote sensing satellite, the communication satellites. So when this program is proved in the human space flight with the long term vision that we have, 30- 40 years from now, probably you could have a new source of energy. You will have several technologies which will be giving benefit to the other sectors in the economy. So these are things to be seen. We have a broad understanding of what are those areas which are important.


Q. So you are not playing with as they say 'toys for big boys'? You are asking for something which at the end of the day, the country would be happy having spent? Is that a fair assessment?

A. We are talking about something that is a logical step- a step that we can certainly do with our today's capability that will give us immense benefits- tangible, intangible and also strategic in the future. And we will be still having our front ranking position in the world comity in space. Today, if you take every other space portfolios, we are there. In space applications everyone says that India is a role model. In satellite launch vehicle technology, we are there in one of the six. In space science we are there- in planetary exploration we are there with Chandrayaan. Human space flight is one area we have not entered and this would take us there.

Q. So the Aam admi is on your horizon- you are not forgetting him.

A. Aam aadmi is our first priority. Whatever we do, whatever decision we take, our first touch stone is how does it benefit the aam aadmi today or tomorrow.




Now can we cut out all the Rona & Dhona (R&Dh) being carried out by other members?

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby disha » 15 Apr 2010 08:27

kasthuri wrote:Is 19 years (or even 15 years) really justified in coming up with this technology? Can any expert here clarify? I understand that it is a complex technology, but given that there is already knowledge in the area, does it usually take this long? If reverse engineering would have been fast, why not do it?
Please note that I don't want to undermine ISRO's great efforts in getting this up and running, I just want to understand the delay if it is attributed to several factors.Or may be it takes this long in general...


Yes it is. Or throw more dollahs at it to shorten the time.

Remember the brazing technology for cooling the nozzle? Even Americans copied it from the Ruskies. And the Amerikhans got an early start on their "technology" due to engineers like Werner Von Braun!

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby shiv » 15 Apr 2010 08:36

18 years is long enough for people to forget history.

The early days the plan was that we buy the engine and stage, and then we also acquire the technology but that did not materialize. Then what we did was that the ISRO and the country took a bold step that we will develop it internally. And in 1994 the government gave us the approval for going ahead as a project about 350 crores.


Russia was supposed to give us engines and then the tech.

That suddenly changed to giving us engines alone. No tech. The plan to develop engines had to be meshed in with launch plans and I think there were a string of negotiations with Russia for the supply of engines.

IIRC they were to give us 7 engines. (or was it 5???)

Of those seven engines five have been used in five GSLV launches. The first GSLV launch was in 2001 - 9 years ago. It was a planned launch with a Russian engine as were all the subsequent launches. I think only 2 GSLV launches have succeeded so far.

Anyone who has been following the issue will know that it was given this much time for development.
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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby shiv » 15 Apr 2010 08:40

kasthuri wrote:Is 19 years (or even 15 years) really justified in coming up with this technology? Can any expert here clarify? I understand that it is a complex technology, but given that there is already knowledge in the area, does it usually take this long? If reverse engineering would have been fast, why not do it?



I believe this comes closest to answering your question. It is there in the interview:

Q. Because it is really one is to one so how do you say it is not reverse engineered? How can you make people believe that you did not copy the Russian design?

A. It is not one is to one. But if you see the specifications of putting in at that class of the satellite if you work out what is the velocity that needs to be added by the upper stage of the engine- same number you have to provide. So whether it is a Russian engineer designing or Indian engineer designing, it is to the same specification.


I think he is trying to say that you cannot clone copy the engine because the engine requirements vary with the satellite that is to be launched.

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby disha » 15 Apr 2010 08:44

shiv wrote:IIRC they were to give us 7 engines. (or was it 5???)


Seven. Five for launch, Two for Ground testing/Evaluation.

Of those seven engines five have been used in five GSLV launches. The first GSLV launch was in 2001 - 9 years ago. It was a planned launch with a Russian engine as were all the subsequent launches. I think only 2 GSLV launches have succeeded so far.


Hmmm... do not want to use your examples., but I would count 4 successful launches, two completed missions, one failure. That would be a correct way to put the complexity across IMO.

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby Singha » 15 Apr 2010 09:06

there were 'allegations' from the usual suspects that planeloads of design documents were flown to india in the phase where usa was putting pressure on russia to scrap the deal. it was alleged the russians conceded not giving a full tot
but provided these planeloads of design data and drawings. 8)

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby SSridhar » 15 Apr 2010 09:43

Bandwidth to improve as GSAT-4 heralds Ka band
Excerpts
The new Ka band that ISRO is heralding in the country on its latest satellite GSat-4 will improve the bandwidth for the Net user and also drive down the price noticeably.

But not immediately. The customer has to wait for three more years to feel the effect of its real operation, according to Mr K.R. Sridhara Murthi, Managing Director of ISRO's commercial arm, Antrix Corporation.
By 2013, ISRO plans to have a fully operational Ka-band satellite, the GSat-14. “I'm sure Ka will click technologically. It is very much part of future technology. While you may enjoy new recipes, you also cherish the older ones. Ka, when it gets operational, will complement C and Ku bands that we have used so far.”

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby KrishG » 15 Apr 2010 10:18

disha wrote:
Hmmm... do not want to use your examples., but I would count 4 successful launches, two completed missions, one failure. That would be a correct way to put the complexity across IMO.


It is 2 successes, 2 partial failures and 1 failure for GSLV in it's 5 flights. The interesting thing is that both the partial failures (D1 and F04) and were due an under-performing Russian upper stage. Although partial failures do not result in mission failure but the satellite is placed in undesired orbit and inclination. So the satellite has to use it's onboard fuel to reach the intended orbit thereby reducing it's operational life.

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby disha » 15 Apr 2010 10:38

Let's get semantically pedantic. 2 Successes, 2 Partial Successes and 1 Failure. Of course the Indian DDM will do lota of Rona & Dhona on the partial failures without realising that it is the Russian upper stage that underperformed!

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby vina » 15 Apr 2010 10:58

Russian upper stage that underperformed


Yes. Per published reports, the Russian upper stage came heavier than promised, had lower efficiency than promised leading to under performance. Later Russians delivered a 8ton version of the CUS, which however performed at peak thrust only for a limited duration.

The Yindoo upperstage is supposed to be lighter than the Russian one, has growth potential to go upto 9 tons or higher thrust.

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby PratikDas » 15 Apr 2010 11:07

disha wrote:Q. And this technology denial that happened did this come as a blessing in disguise for you?

A. Anything which happens is for the good. Since it was not available, we took a bold decision and with full determination we got it. That's how today we are the sixth in the world to have this cryogenic engine technology.

[My take: Even the bloody aussies do not have it]

This isn't the only space technology that India has and the Aussies don't. That list is very long and there is no comparison! I guess many don't see the difference in quality between the first article from NDTV and the second from The Hindu
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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby Venu » 15 Apr 2010 11:11

Singha wrote:there were 'allegations' from the usual suspects that planeloads of design documents were flown to india in the phase where usa was putting pressure on russia to scrap the deal. it was alleged the russians conceded not giving a full tot
but provided these planeloads of design data and drawings. 8)


All written in Russian? :mrgreen:

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby KrishG » 15 Apr 2010 11:37

vina wrote:The Yindoo upperstage is supposed to be lighter than the Russian one, has growth potential to go upto 9 tons or higher thrust.


IIRC the present CUSE can deliver 93.2 kN if the AFR is decreased (ie amount fuel bein pumped is increased) and a slight increase in chamber pressure (through pump boost). It has been designed to do so.

My photo of CUSE brochure at AE-09

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby Suppiah » 15 Apr 2010 12:03

disha wrote:



[My point: Whether it is a US designer or Indian designer, a rocket as a nose cone on front and a burning end on the rear]

....

Q. Radhakrishnan sahib, we still have 400 million people in India living below the poverty line and you are hoping for the government to foot a 12 and a half crore rupee human space flight programme? Can you keep your hand on your heart and say this is the best expenditure that you can do?

Q. So the Aam admi is on your horizon- you are not forgetting him.



[/quote]


Looks like rockets are not the only one with burning end on the rear...

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby vina » 15 Apr 2010 12:31

KrishG wrote:IIRC the present CUSE can deliver 93.2 kN if the AFR is decreased (ie amount fuel bein pumped is increased) and a slight increase in chamber pressure (through pump boost). It has been designed to do so.

My photo of CUSE brochure at AE-09


Do you remember what is the thermodynamic cycle of the cryogenic engine that is going to fly this afternoon ?. Is it staged combustion ?

The reason I am asking is that the 20ton C20 version being developed for MKIII/IV is a gas generator cycle.

Question is, when you have mastered a more efficient cycle namely staged combustion, why do you want to go for a less efficient gas generator cycle in the next engine being developed ?.

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby disha » 15 Apr 2010 12:59

Opened Forum to cover GSLV D3/GSAT 4 launch viewtopic.php?f=3&t=5506

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby KrishG » 15 Apr 2010 13:29

vina wrote:
Do you remember what is the thermodynamic cycle of the cryogenic engine that is going to fly this afternoon ?. Is it staged combustion ?


Yep!
CUSE - Staged Combustion
CE-20 - Gas generator
SCE - Staged combustion
and :wink:

vina wrote:The reason I am asking is that the 20ton C20 version being developed for MKIII/IV is a gas generator cycle.

Question is, when you have mastered a more efficient cycle namely staged combustion, why do you want to go for a less efficient gas generator cycle in the next engine being developed ?


Maybe because they want a more reliable and less-complex engine. The efficiency variation b/w staged combustion and gas generator cycle is large & considerable for high thrust engines. But for low to moderate thrust upper stage engines (like CE-20) the reliability and simplicity could outweigh a small advantage in terms of efficiency.

Also IIRC the efficiency of Staged combustion cycle engines decrease with increase in altitude. This combined with small variations in efficiency for low/moderate thrust engines could be the reason most vehicles not employing staged combustion cycle on upper stage engines.

And there is the bleeder expander cycle with it's exceptional reliability compared to the other two, that could(would :wink: ) be employed on a future upper stage engine. :wink: :wink:

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby KrishG » 15 Apr 2010 13:35

disha wrote:Opened Forum to cover GSLV D3/GSAT 4 launch viewtopic.php?f=3&t=5506


Has it received the divine approval of Adminullahs ?

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby Gerard » 17 Apr 2010 02:16

Cartosat-2B to be launched on May
BANGALORE: India will launch an advanced remote-sensing satellite, Cartosat-2B, on May 9 from Sriharikota.

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby Varoon Shekhar » 17 Apr 2010 19:25

Does anybody know which version of the PSLV will be launched in May? We haven't seen a PSLV standard version( six strap-ons, 9 tonnes each) launch for 3 years now. With Cartosat and Alsat( Algerian satellite), you would think the SV, but the capacity of the core alone vehicle is pretty high.

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby KrishG » 17 Apr 2010 19:55

Varoon Shekhar wrote:Does anybody know which version of the PSLV will be launched in May? We haven't seen a PSLV standard version( six strap-ons, 9 tonnes each) launch for 3 years now. With Cartosat and Alsat( Algerian satellite), you would think the SV, but the capacity of the core alone vehicle is pretty high.


Core Alone version.
IIRC the next launch of std version will be that of RISAT-1.


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