Indian Space Program Discussion

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby SSridhar » 08 Jul 2010 08:00

More info on the student payload
In a press release here, Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) said the rocket was successfully launched at 3.50 p.m. and achieved its intended altitude of 60 km in 2 minutes.

ISRO said students from Vellore Institute of Technology University (VITU) had developed part of the payload in the flight “as a co-passenger,” with the guidance of Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre (VSSC).

The students' payload comprised tri-axial accelerometers, power switching module and safe arm relay unit matching the requirements of RH 200 rocket.

The tri-axial accelerometers can monitor accelerations in all three directions. The power switching module is for the power control of the payload.

The students of the Indian Institute of Space Technology in Thiruvananthapuram are also progressing fast in their attempt to make the first indigenous students' rocket with the support of experts from the VSSC. In its continued endeavour to handhold the student community, ISRO has included a picosatellite designed by undergraduate students across India in its forthcoming PSLV-C15 mission. The major objective of this project is to provide hands-on experience in frontier areas of space technology such as the design, fabrication and realisation of a space mission at a reduced cost,” ISRO said.

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby KrishG » 08 Jul 2010 22:18

Indian Space Transportation System - Present Scenario and Future Directions

<embed type="application/x-shockwave-flash" src="http://picasaweb.google.com/s/c/bin/slideshow.swf" width="600" height="400" flashvars="host=picasaweb.google.com&hl=en_US&feat=flashalbum&RGB=0x000000&feed=http%3A%2F%2Fpicasaweb.google.com%2Fdata%2Ffeed%2Fapi%2Fuser%2Fcrgkc.r%2Falbumid%2F5491569930285357681%3Falt%3Drss%26kind%3Dphoto%26hl%3Den_US" pluginspage="http://www.macromedia.com/go/getflashplayer"></embed>

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby Sanjay M » 09 Jul 2010 09:49

Thanks for that!

http://picasaweb.google.com/crgkc.r/Ind ... 5340941554

I found Slides 28 and 34 to be the most informative to me. I'd read about the TSTO before, but I wasn't sure exactly what the flight profile was, and whether TSTO was exactly the same as AVATAR (it's not - it's the precursor - a flyback booster). So based on Slide 34, then AVATAR will be an air-breathing SSTO derivative of the TSTO. The flight profile shown on Slide 28 also shows how the upper stage could be fully reusable as well, making a rocket-powered landing. That would be useful for a mission to the Moon, Mars, Venus, or even Titan or Europa.

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby Ravishankar » 09 Jul 2010 16:41

INSAT 4-B spacecraft hit by power problem

http://thehindu.com/sci-tech/science/article507450.ece

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby Kakarat » 09 Jul 2010 16:47

GSLV-D3 Failure Analysis Report - ISRO

ISRO wrote:The above failure is attributed to the anomalous stopping of Fuel Booster Turbo Pump (FBTP). The start-up of FBTP was normal. It reached a maximum speed of 34,800 rpm and continued to function as predicted after the start of CUS. However, the speed of FBTP started dipping after 0.9 seconds and it stopped within the next 0.6 seconds.

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby Sanjay M » 09 Jul 2010 18:12

"anomalous stopping" means ground teshting required.

But really, are they then saying that ignition occurred?(ie."itsh a shuccshesh! shabash!")
Maybe the gas flow to the turbine was unstable, or got cut off.

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby Neela » 09 Jul 2010 18:21

Inferences from the above report and comparing that with previous discussions on this thread:

1. The two vernier thrusters functioned normally.
2. There seems to be no problems related to vacuum conditions

Both the possible causes lead to the turbo pump.
From Wiki: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Turbopump

Turbopumps in rockets are important and problematic enough that launch vehicles using one have been caustically described as a 'turbopump with a rocket attached'- up to 55% of the total cost has been ascribed to this area.

Common problems include:

1. excessive flow from the high pressure rim back to the low pressure inlet along the gap between the casing of the pump and the rotor
2. excessive recirculation of the fluid at inlet
3. excessive vortexing of the fluid as it leaves the casing of the pump

In addition, the precise shape of the rotor itself is critical.

Since ISRO makes no mention of points 2 and 3 above, the basic design is working as designed.

Sanjay , from the report , it says : Fuel Booster Pump stopped after 0.9 seconds. THat means CUS engine got the fuel for that time which translates to 2.2 seconds of flight with the CUS engine! sucess onlee

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby geeth » 09 Jul 2010 19:02

Could there be a possibility that the time duration for which the 'wet' parts are exposed to liquid Hydrogen during ground testing is different from that of actual flight? If yes, would that lead to deterioration of the material (eg., control valves, channels of flow etc,) in contact and leading to rupture of those parts?

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby negi » 09 Jul 2010 19:29

So ISRO chairman's observations immediately after the launch failure are vindicated.

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby Gagan » 09 Jul 2010 19:59

If they announced that the CUS had ignited, they did so on the basis of the data they received.
Members who have been with ISRO will know more, that ISRO can tell by several different data points that the ignition did indeed take place, and almost immediately too.

Obviously they go into fault analysis with reams of data that lay public don't know about. All this while the lay public and media indulge in unnecessary speculation.
Neela wrote:Fuel Booster Pump stopped after 0.9 seconds. THat means CUS engine got the fuel for that time which translates to 2.2 seconds of flight with the CUS engine! sucess onlee

I love it when someone jaankar simplifies things for mango jingos like me in the last line.

Mogambo Khush Hua!

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby ramana » 10 Jul 2010 01:15

Kakarat wrote:GSLV-D3 Failure Analysis Report - ISRO

ISRO wrote:The above failure is attributed to the anomalous stopping of Fuel Booster Turbo Pump (FBTP). The start-up of FBTP was normal. It reached a maximum speed of 34,800 rpm and continued to function as predicted after the start of CUS. However, the speed of FBTP started dipping after 0.9 seconds and it stopped within the next 0.6 seconds.


This report is more like Failure Interim Report. They havent driven to root cause which is to identify the failure mechanism. They have postulated two scenarios which have to be proven.

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby Sanjay M » 10 Jul 2010 04:55

Neela wrote:Inferences from the above report and comparing that with previous discussions on this thread:

1. The two vernier thrusters functioned normally.
2. There seems to be no problems related to vacuum conditions

Both the possible causes lead to the turbo pump.
From Wiki: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Turbopump

Turbopumps in rockets are important and problematic enough that launch vehicles using one have been caustically described as a 'turbopump with a rocket attached'- up to 55% of the total cost has been ascribed to this area.

Common problems include:

1. excessive flow from the high pressure rim back to the low pressure inlet along the gap between the casing of the pump and the rotor
2. excessive recirculation of the fluid at inlet
3. excessive vortexing of the fluid as it leaves the casing of the pump

In addition, the precise shape of the rotor itself is critical.

Since ISRO makes no mention of points 2 and 3 above, the basic design is working as designed.

Sanjay , from the report , it says : Fuel Booster Pump stopped after 0.9 seconds. THat means CUS engine got the fuel for that time which translates to 2.2 seconds of flight with the CUS engine! sucess onlee


"itsh a shuccshesh! shabash!" :P

Regardless of what the nature of the turbopump overload was - mechanical, thermal - perhaps ISRO could improve the design for next time, by having 2 turbopumps to take the load of 1.
If you distribute the load, then there is less chance of overload.

Space Shuttle Main Engine, considered to be the most efficient cryogenic rocket engine in existence, uses dual turbo-pumps instead of just having the one. Of these 2 pumps, one is specialized for low-pressure conditions and the other specialized for high-pressure conditions (see LPFTP and HPFTP):

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Space_Shut ... uel_system

Why gamble the whole damn rocket and payload on the one component which suffers the most stress during the launch, when you could pay a bit more and have 2 of them?

Yes, the turbopump is the most critical and most expensive component of the entire rocket, as your quote from wikipedia points out. But distributing the load across multiple turbopumps would then reduce the strain, and potentially simplify the design of each one, making each cheaper, while distributing the risk and reducing the likelihood of failure.

Besides, learning to make multi-pump designs would also pave the way for ISRO building much heavier lifting rockets. After all, when the turbopump is basically expected to shoulder the load for hauling the entire vehicle to orbit, there's no way to just scale up the engine and expect the turbopump to be a superman, withstanding ever greater stress. For really hardy rockets, you have to distribute the load across more than one pump, so ISRO might as well start now.

If they learn the right lessons from this failure -- oh, ekshkuze me, shuccshesh -- then they could revise their design methodology in the right direction, and bounce back to reach greater heights of achievement.

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby Sanjay M » 10 Jul 2010 06:36

Here's some mention about ISRO's upcoming plans:


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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby Sanjay M » 10 Jul 2010 12:39

Has anybody seen this site? Who runs it? I assume it's just a private site, not actually affiliated with ISRO:

http://isrokids.com/wp/

Still - nice idea.

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby ramana » 11 Jul 2010 04:30

SanjayM, Redundancy can get us only so much reliability. Success depends on robustness.

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby Sanjay M » 11 Jul 2010 13:44

nukavarapu wrote:^^^ There is something drastically wrong here. All this time following the news reports etc. etc. the media got me convinced that Avatar/RLV was the upper stage and the reusable booster was the lower stage. These slides have completely confused me now. The articles that showed up in media where all pointing to the Avatar/RLV is the one that will carry the payload, riding on a booster rocket. To make it fully re-usable they were saying about making the booster air-breathing too and the recovery by parachutes and plunging into sea. Now I am really confused!



Well, we can see from Slide 27, that the TSTO has a cryo or semi-cryo rocket engine, and not a scramjet engine, which is what AVATAR is supposed to have ("aerobic")

Image

Then we see in slide 28 that the TSTO lower stage boosts the entire vehicle vertically as a rocket, and simply glides back to Earth, so it's a flyback booster. The upper stage delivers the payload to orbit and then re-enters, parachutes and possibly lands under power like a DC-X, which I find particularly impressive:

Image

Then we see from slide 34 that after the TSTO comes the air-breathing SSTO, which then obviously has to be AVATAR:

Image

So all in all, that's cleared up a lot for me, since I was confusing TSTO with AVATAR, and they are quite different. TSTO is not airbreathing at all, but is simply a reusable flyback booster with a reusable DC-X type of upper stage.

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby darshhan » 12 Jul 2010 14:16


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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby KrishG » 13 Jul 2010 01:18

Plan to send two Indians into space

SRIHARIKOTA: An unmanned crew module will be put in orbit around the earth by a modified Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) in 2013 as a forerunner to the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) sending two Indians into space, S. Ramakrishnan, Director, Liquid Propulsion Systems Centre, ISRO, said here on Monday.

India has plans to send two astronauts in a low-earth orbit and they will stay in space for about a week before returning to the earth. A third launch pad, at a cost of Rs.1,000 crore, will be built at Sriharikota, where the rocket that will take the astronauts into space will be assembled and launched.

Mr. Ramakrishnan told journalists here, after the successful PSLV-C15 flight, that the module for the astronauts had already been designed. The life-support systems, thermal-proofing and the crew escape system in case of an emergency had been defined. “We are also planning a launch pad abort for the crew in case of an accident,” Mr. Ramakrishnan said.

PSLV-C15 Mission Director P. Kunhikrishnan said that the satellites went to their precise orbits. If the mission was to inject five satellites into a polar orbit an altitude of 637 km, the final figure was an apogee of 637.39 km and a perigee of 631 km.

There was no “hold” in the 51-hour countdown to the launch. The PSLV-C15 lifted off majestically at the appointed time of 9.22 a.m., painting the sky with yellow flames. At the end of 17 minutes and 14 seconds of the flight, the satellites were home and dry.

There was applause when T.K. Alex, Director of ISRO Satellite Centre in Bangalore, announced that the Studsat's signals were received at the ground station in Bangalore and those of the Alsat in Algeria.

While the PSLV-C15 cost Rs.80 crore, the Cartosat-2B cost Rs.175 crores.

The PSLV - C15 Vehicle Director was B. Jayakumar and the Satellite Director M. Krishnaswamy.

Speaking on the Human Spaceflight Programme, ISRO Chairman K. Radhakrishnan said ISRO needed a highly reliable vehicle to take humans into space. Such rockets were called human rated vehicles. Certain crucial facilities such as a new launch pad for sending human beings into space had to be built at the spaceport at Sriharikota.

Facilities to handle the astronauts when they returned to the earth also needed to be built. In the first phase of the programme, these critical technologies, including that of re-entry, would be developed. In the second phase, a human rated vehicle would be developed. In the third phase, astronauts would be trained to go into space. Normally, it took three years to train an astronaut, Dr. Radhakrishnan said.

N. Narayanamoorthy, Chief Executive, Human Spaceflight Programme, Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre (VSSC), Thiruvananthapuram, said the most important technology to be developed was the crew escape system. In the first phase, the module for astronauts and a PSLV with a modified first stage would be built. It would be an unmanned module but identical to the final module. The location for the third launch pad site had been decided upon, said M.C. Dathan, Director, Satish Dhawan Space Centre, Sriharikota. It would boast of a vehicle assembly building.

Multi-purpose images

R.R. Navalgund, Director, Space Applications Centre, Ahmedabad, said Cartosat-2B, launched on Monday from Sriharikota, could be used in a variety of ways, depending on the imagination of the user. The images taken by its panchromatic camera could be used for planning roads in villages, building harbours, preparing accurate maps, keeping a watch on encroachments, and for various infrastructural activities, said Dr. Navalgund.

(Cartosat-2B's images will have a resolution of 0.8 metres, i.e. from a height of 637 km it can take pictures of objects on the earth which are three foot long.)

P.S. Veeraraghavan, Director, VSSC, said a Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle (GSLV - F06) would lift off from Sriharikota by September-end or the first week of October this year.

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby KrishnaMu » 13 Jul 2010 04:05

Here is article from norwegien space agency http://www.spacecentre.no/?module=Artic ... w;ID=51433

Usually BBC will cover this article by concluding still million living in 2$ under a day (irrespective any achivement) http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science_and_ ... 599774.stm but this time estimed BBC Technology editor some how missed it just put norwegien prespective.

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby Masaru » 13 Jul 2010 05:57

X post from Cartosat thread
10 eyes in the sky give India space edge
Excerpts

A combination of four Cartosats (1,2,2A and 2B) hovering 630 km above earth allows India to keep areas under close and prolonged surveillance. Multiple satellites ensure that a particular geographical area can be `revisited' every 48 hours.

Three of the cartosats now in orbit have a spatial resolution of less than one metre (0.8 m for Cartosat-2B), which means that they can observe and photograph objects smaller than a car. Cartosat-2B's steerability of 26 degrees allows it to stay focused on the object for a longer duration while on the move as compared to the other remote sensing satellites, which have a range of applications. Risat-1 is scheduled for launch late this year.

Cartosats use panchromatic cameras to take black and white pictures of earth. While cartosat-1 weighed 1560 kg and had a spatial resolution of 2.5 metres and a swathe of 30 km, the later versions had a finer spatial resolution of less than a metre and a swathe of 9.6 km.


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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby Sanjay M » 13 Jul 2010 11:47


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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby Sanjay M » 13 Jul 2010 12:01

x-posting

New Terahertz Remote-Sensing Technique Can Detect Explosives, Drugs, etc

http://www.wired.com/wiredscience/2010/ ... detection/

http://www.dnaindia.com/scitech/report_ ... es_1408907


This reminds me a bit of the chemcam system developed by NASA for its upcoming Mars rover. I'm thinking that not only could this new Terahertz sensing method be useful for detecting explosives, but it could also be useful for analyzing rocks on the Moon or other planets. The Chandrayaan-2 rover will apparently be using something like chemcam, but perhaps this latest technique could be even better still. Maybe it's not too late to upgrade the planned instrument packages. This latest technology sounds like it could even work from orbit, and so you wouldn't have to equip it on the rover, but could just keep it on the Chandrayaan-2 orbiter.

The most productive use would be for remote intelligence gathering here on Earth. You could have a satellite or drone aircraft equipped with this technology, which would be able to gather more detailed information about a target it's monitoring.

Image

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby wasu » 14 Jul 2010 11:00

http://www.space-travel.com/reports/Ind ... V_999.html

Mumbai, India (PTI) Jul 14, 2010

Almost a year ago on July 20, 2009, external affairs minister SM Krishna and US secretary of state Hillary Clinton met at Hyderabad House in New Delhi and signed what is known as Technology Safeguards Agreement (TSA) which strengthens Indo-US space ties. On Monday, this pact became a reality when PSLV for the first time placed in orbit a satellite with a large number of US components. According to Isro officials, this flight is therefore politically important with regards to Indo-US relationship.

The satellite is nearly 200-kg Alsat (Algerian Satellite), owned by Algerian Space Agency and is built by a French company with several US-made parts. Isro officials said the Alsat launch was significant because it was the first one following the signing of the TSA between India and the US.

TSA facilitates the launch of US satellites and satellites with US components on Indian launch vehicles. It will cover launches involving satellites owned by US government or academic institutions or by third country space agencies and universities which have US equipment on board.
....

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby Austin » 14 Jul 2010 14:38

The TSTO concept is quite interesting , I thought ISRO abandoned it for Avtar

Has any country in the world ever operationalized TSTO ?Looks quite unique to me.

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby Sanjay M » 15 Jul 2010 03:34

From what I see, TSTO is a necessary precursor to the AVATAR SSTO, since TSTO will use conventional rocket engines and not scramjet engines, and it's much more feasible to reach orbit in 2 stages as compared to just 1.

Falcon-1 and Falcon-9 are the newest examples of TSTOs. It's just that they have no flyback booster, and are instead counting on parachuting the lower-stage booster back.

The USAF is going for a flyback booster, as I recently posted in another thread.

What surprised me about ISRO's TSTO was that even the upper stage will be retrieved/reused, landing DC-X or Soyuz style.

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby Sanjay M » 15 Jul 2010 09:15

Hey everybody, if India ever does a manned lunar program, then what overall name should we give to it? Apollo was the Greek Sun god, and also the patron of knowledge.

I'm thinking that India could name its manned lunar program after the Himalayas, which have long been held as the most challenging summits to climb. The Himalayas are also known as the "abode of snow", and we now know that there is ice on the Moon. In a series of missions, then each mission could be named after a particular peak.

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby aqkhan » 15 Jul 2010 11:58

Chandrayaan followed by a suffix is good enough. Thank you very much! :lol:

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby Kailash » 15 Jul 2010 12:02

for eligible, aspiring folks, ISRO is hiring

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby Austin » 15 Jul 2010 12:19

Sanjay M wrote:From what I see, TSTO is a necessary precursor to the AVATAR SSTO, since TSTO will use conventional rocket engines and not scramjet engines, and it's much more feasible to reach orbit in 2 stages as compared to just 1.

Falcon-1 and Falcon-9 are the newest examples of TSTOs. It's just that they have no flyback booster, and are instead counting on parachuting the lower-stage booster back.

The USAF is going for a flyback booster, as I recently posted in another thread.

What surprised me about ISRO's TSTO was that even the upper stage will be retrieved/reused, landing DC-X or Soyuz style.


Yes TSTO is a nice concept and perhaps a cheaper and technologically less challenging then a SSTO scramjet.

The Russians too have a similar concept in Biklal booster for Angara SLV the only difference seems to be the glide vehical has a small engine hence it will be a powered flight rather then a glide with just one chance to land. Bikal Booster

I just wonder how much as a nation we are willing to take risk in our own manned flight program if it gets materialized , its not just expensive but also a very risk oriented program as we have seen with US and Russian space program.

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby Kailash » 15 Jul 2010 12:45

Austin wrote:I just wonder how much as a nation we are willing to take risk in our own manned flight program if it gets materialized , its not just expensive but also a very risk oriented program as we have seen with US and Russian space program.


The risk is a valid issue - Failure is not an option with manned space missions - not anywhere - especially not in India.

Instead of sending air force pilots etc., it should be scientist-astronauts who should be sent on missions. There should be grand PR campaigns hailing them as heroes. As an insurance they can go public with interviews - stating how they know and acknowledge the risks and accept the possibility of death. Public should get the message that this is a totally voluntary exercise.

Should something wrong happen, we should hail them as martyrs who died for progress of science. A very difficult argument to convince the Indian press and people - IMHO Indian people are not going to buy that easily. If the DDM plays the wrong tune on this, then the human space flight program might be canceled quickly. And that is a huge risk.


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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby wasu » 16 Jul 2010 06:42

This is really gratifying...Looking forward to the first picture from Studsat..

Why India’s smallest satellite is such a big deal

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/why-i ... l/646742/0

..Vigneswaran, who was responsible for Studsat’s on-board computing, stayed on at NMIT for a year after he graduated in electronics and communications, and so did eight others who were in charge of various sub-systems such as structure, payload and communication. “I had an offer from IBM but this project was important, it was exciting. I am leaving in August for higher studies in the Netherlands,” he says. His twin brother Visweswaran led the ground station development before leaving about a month ago for France, where he is studying at the International Space University.

“Most of us had offers from good companies and universities, but nothing would provided the kind of exposure and hands-on experience in space technology that this project has given us,” says Chetan Dikshit, who managed the finance side of the project and will go on to do an MBA this year.

The pico-satellite tested the limits of their knowledge and skill. “Since it is so small, it has no thrusters to orient the camera. To turn the camera to face the earth, we have to perform algorithms that could take days,” says Vigneswaran.

Chetan Angadi, one of the key technical leaders, says the optics were bought from the market but integration had to be meticulous since a minute difference could result in blurred images. “We expect the first images, which will have a resolution of 93 metres per pixel, to arrive after the satellite stabilises,” he says. Sharath, who designed the outer structure of Studsat, says the challenge was to maintain an accuracy of 0.01 mm — “A sheet of paper is 0.03 mm thick” — in dimensions.
....
Mamatha, a student of electronics and communication who led the attitude determination sub-system of Studsat, and is in charge of the tracking station, says, “We have the requisite equipment now. All we need to do is pass on the passion for space science to our juniors and continue making Studsats.”

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby Sanjay M » 16 Jul 2010 11:40

I'm wondering if India could try to build something like Sea Dragon in the future:

http://www.astronautix.com/lvs/searagon.htm

Image

Image

Image

Veteran rocket engineer Robert Truax had conceived of the Sea Dragon design in 1962 to bring down launch costs. The idea was to sacrifice optimal rocket performance in favour of lowering costs.

The Sea Dragon was designed to be towed out to sea and launched from there. It could be built from 8 mm thick maraging steel, like a submarine hull. It used kerosene which could be provided from a tanker ship, as well as LH2/LOX which could be generated from the reactor of a nuclear-powered naval vessel.

It seems like these things are within India's capabilities to pull off, and it could radically lower launch costs - especially for heavy payloads. The Sea Dragon was designed to lift 550 tonnes to LEO.

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby negi » 16 Jul 2010 23:03

^ Boss a behemoth like 'sea launch' (likes of Boeing ,Energia and Yuzmash as stake holders) filed for bankruptcy protection last year (iirc they plan to resume normal operations sometime next year). Btw how much net gain can we achieve from launching from equator (with cost of shipping equipment and launching from sea factored in) vs our southern most tip (8deg 4' latitude) ?

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby Sanjay M » 17 Jul 2010 07:04

I am not suggesting Sea Dragon is good because of launching at sea. I'm saying what's appealing about Sea Dragon is its massive size and lift capacity. You'll argue that there's almost no need to launch such a massive vehicle, but I'd say it's better and cheaper because it can be used to launch many payloads at once.

The fact that it launches at sea is mainly to facilitate moving such a massive vehicle, by towing it behind a ship. It could be assembled at a shipyard by the sea. India has recently gained experience in building the Arihant, and this could likewise be applied towards constructing a Sea Dragon-sized launch vehicle.

Some people say super-heavy rockets are too big, but I'd say they're a nice cheap way to launch many payloads at once. Sure, you're concentrating the risk on each launch, but there is a tremendous savings on cost, due to economies of scale.

Also, that huge lifting capacity could help India get to the Moon much faster. If China gets to the Moon and we're very very far behind them, then it would be a tremendous loss of face for us.
With a Sea Dragon approach, we could keep abreast of them, or even surpass them in the space race.

We would also dominate the satellite launch market through unbeatable costs.
We need a big Jagannath type of rocket as a centrepiece for the technical community.

Sanjay M
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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby Sanjay M » 18 Jul 2010 04:18

Anyway, I was thinking that a big dumb cheap heavy-lift rocket could use LOX/kerosene for the lower stage, and LOX/LNG for the upper stage. The Isp for LNG isn't far behind that of LH2, and its cryogenic temperature isn't as extraordinarily low, thus alleviating the hazards of handling it.

http://pdf.aiaa.org/preview/CDReadyMJPC ... 9_5133.pdf

Whereas LH2 isn't going to be a main fuel for the economy, LNG is certainly overtaking oil as the dominant fuel in the world economy, and therefore any expertise India develops in handling it will provide benefits to the economy as a whole.

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby Sanjay M » 18 Jul 2010 08:55



Sanjay M
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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby Sanjay M » 18 Jul 2010 09:59



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