Indian Space Program Discussion

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enqyoob
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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby enqyoob » 04 Sep 2009 13:58

Could someone pls explain the comments made here about the ISRO website? What does "cursive style font" mean? (i know what "curses" are, but what is "cursive"?)

Also, the site seems to have a lot of neon sign like stuff going down the right side, etc. What do u guys find good/bad about this as a "major professional site" that also has to cater to the K-DOO population?

Serious pooch, mind u. Reason is to help develop something that has a lot of similarities in the content and audience.

Just 2 give you my FORTRAN-era opinions,
1. I don't like things flashing by on websites - the Korean and Taiwanese kids do those a lot, does not come across as very professional or tasteful to me.
2. The ISRO website does not scale to the screen - so it came up as a little thing occupying only half my laptop screen. And it does look like it was designed by PIUs.
3. Also, it does not highlight the R&D or the facilities - just the latest news.
4. I wouldn't mind seeing animated graphs - but they should be high-res.

But other than that, it is a lively, dynamic site, and I am sure if I followed the links they would go to a lot of good stuff. In the past I have gone and got a lot of good stuff from the ISRO site, when it was not nearly so "FLASH"-y.

What r ur observations?

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby vishwakarmaa » 04 Sep 2009 15:03

Arunkumar wrote:Sanjay M saar all are good ideas.

Nasa allows public participation in many of its deep space missions by way of a CD that is carried on board the spacecraft with names of general public (nationality not an issue) submitted via internet. Such a public outreach program has very high PR value for ensuring public support.


It has psy-op value. Then NASA can claim that the mission was not Amrikhan but global.

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby vishwakarmaa » 04 Sep 2009 15:07

Raveen wrote:No one is irrelevant
Pakis count the number of muslims in space, we cant even count the number of dual citizens?


Why compare with Pigs?

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby KrishG » 04 Sep 2009 15:45

narayanan wrote:Also, it does not highlight the R&D or the facilities - just the latest news.


They update the news column once in a month. Is that 'latest' ?
No updates on Mk III, RLV-TD, HSF, UMLV and semi-cryo, Chandrayaan-2 etc etc ........ Leave updates, there is not evn proper information on these topics. The only thing interesting is the Annual Report (for which we have to wait every year) , even that too gets offers limited information. There's a 'Mission Profile' column in which you have to add 2 years each launch date to get close to predicting when the actual launch is. Even the Russian and Chinese websites are a 1000 times more informative.

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby vishwakarmaa » 04 Sep 2009 16:02

KrishG wrote:Even the Russian and Chinese websites are a 1000 times more informative.


Two issues hit ISRO -
1. Lack of experienced people.(Reservations - promote race over merit)
2. Lack of enough Funds comparable to NASA/Chinese/Russian space agencies.

2nd issue complicates 1st further. Those who are experienced quit the job, because not enough is paid.

Solutions -
1. Remove Reservations from ISRO,DRDO,MoD PSU's.
2. Open MoD PSU's to "open" collaboration with home companies and specially startups(startups are more focused on R&D than biggies who waste investment on running call-centers for foreign companies).
3. Raise Mutual Funds from market which only Indians can buy and money goes into private Defense units which bring huge profits.
4. Ask RBI to Print Rupees to supply freely for next 3 years to home-grown military-industry complex, whenever is needed. (Every1 knows how much Gold, Fort Knox has in reality.)
4. Lift ISRO,DRDO,PSU's salaries to industry level.
5. Ban foreign arms import for next 10 years.(Contracts already signed remain valid)

5 is Crucial to crush huge arms-import lobby in Armed forces top brass and MoD corruption. We need to replace this lobby with "buy Indian" lobby. Then only, enough funds and thrusts will come into domestic defense R&D.

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby enqyoob » 04 Sep 2009 23:05

Hello... putting up a good, deep website takes just 2 ppl (if one is not enough). If there are more, the site becomes a disaster-by-committee. Like NASA. But u can't leave it just to an unsupervised PIU or DOO.

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby SKrishna » 05 Sep 2009 00:24

Dunno if this has been posted before

Tandem Lunar Observations Failed

Tandem Lunar Observations Failed


Sep 4, 2009


By Frank Morring, Jr.

The premature loss of India's Chandrayaan-1 lunar orbiter on Aug. 29 was a blow not only to the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO), but also to lunar scientists who had just started using its U.S.-provided synthetic aperture radar in conjunction with a similar unit on NASA's new Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) for bistatic observations aimed at finding water ice at the moon's poles.

The first and only attempt to use both spacecraft for a look down into a deep crater from slightly different angles failed because of pointing problems, according to Stewart Nozette, principal investigator on the LRO's Mini-RF. Scientists had hoped the tricky maneuver Aug. 20 would help them distinguish ice and rock radar signatures. The spacecraft were only 20 kilometers (12.4 miles) apart, which gave enough of an angle for differences in the radar-reflection brightness to signify whether the source was rock or ice (Aerospace DAILY, Aug. 21). Ground controllers managed to get data back from both spacecraft, but it turned out to be unusable.

The two agencies were planning a retry when the Indian orbiter fell silent (Aerospace DAILY, Sept. 1). "ISRO should be congratulated," Nozette said. "They did a good job, but the moon is somewhat of a harsh environment."

ISRO's Deep Space Network at Byalalu near Bangalore received its last message from Chandrayaan-1 on Aug. 29. Earlier Chandrayaan-1 had suffered an overheating problem that forced the deactivation of some of its 11 sensors.

That was followed by the star-sensor malfunction, which made the spacecraft difficult to point in the bistatic maneuver, which was performed over Erlanger Crater near the moon's north pole.

"The gyros were drifting 0.8 degrees per hour," Nozette said. "That was about 10 times worse than we thought."

Launched last year, the lunar orbiter wasn't yet halfway through its planned two-year mission. Nonetheless, ISRO chief G. Madhavan Nair says the mission was a success, with 95 percent of its objectives completed.

"We [collected] a large volume of data, including 70,000 images of the moon," he says.

Although lessons are being learned from the loss, the initial design phase of the Chandrayaan-2 has been completed and it is not clear if there will now be changes made to it, Nair says.

The Chandrayaan-2 mission will feature a lunar rover that will be dropped onto the surface. The rover will collect and analyze lunar soil and transmit the data back to the data centers on Earth. Chandrayaan-2 is expected to be launched in two years.

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby Praveen » 05 Sep 2009 01:05

narayanan wrote:Hello... putting up a good, deep website takes just 2 ppl (if one is not enough). If there are more, the site becomes a disaster-by-committee. Like NASA. But u can't leave it just to an unsupervised PIU or DOO.

From my personal exp dealing with Govt. for websites, I can tell you that in most cases there is no professional designer involved and there's infighting between bureaucrats about what to include and what the site should look like. This infighting is most cases leads to bad compromises.

Disclaimer: This exp was not for ISRO and was in early 2000's when I was freshly out of Eng.

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby Sridhar » 05 Sep 2009 01:37

What's a PIU?

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby sanjaykumar » 05 Sep 2009 04:59

Tandem Lunar Observations Failed


Is there something genetic that one has to read the foreign press for information on GOI endeavours? A lack of confidence or maturity or common sense? Perhaps they think Indians are so patriotic they won't read or believe foreign reports.

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby SKrishna » 05 Sep 2009 17:31

sanjaykumar wrote:Tandem Lunar Observations Failed


Is there something genetic that one has to read the foreign press for information on GOI endeavours? A lack of confidence or maturity or common sense? Perhaps they think Indians are so patriotic they won't read or believe foreign reports.


In this case the tandem lunar observation was being conducted by NASA with the cooperation of ISRO. Remember the MiniSAR that was being used is a NASA payload on Chandrayaan-1. So this is the first official reportage on the fate of this experiment. ISRO never said anything about it or atleast the Indian press didn't report it. :evil:

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby vishwakarmaa » 06 Sep 2009 21:43

CY-1 led to failure on an "innovative" experiment by NASA. No wonder it failed.

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby sanjaykumar » 06 Sep 2009 23:42

The failure part is not the issue, I am not even sure anything to do with this mission is a failure-just as learning is not failing.

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby Sanjay M » 07 Sep 2009 01:52

Space is full of powerful electromagnetic radiation coursing through it, which makes it naturally hazardous for electronics. I wonder if there might be some other mechanism aside from electronics, which could be used instead to power and control spacecraft. Perhaps photonics/optics, since these aren't based on charge?

If India gets into the business of designing photonic processors one day, then these could prove to be the better platforms for future space endeavors.

Here's also an article I came across, which features a different idea:

http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn1 ... n-air.html

Image

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Mission Priorities, Capabilities

Postby Sanjay M » 07 Sep 2009 04:41

I've been thinking that space missions should be categorized into 2 types:

- Main purpose is in demonstrating an engineering capability
- Main purpose is in scientific investigation

With the first type, you are mainly conducting the mission to demonstrate/prove some technological capability, and as part of that you might be able to accomplish some scientific investigation as well.

With the second type of mission, you are mainly conducting it for the purpose of scientific investigation, and towards that end you might have to develop some engineering/technology to accomplish that goal.

To me, advancing science and technology is like climbing hand-over-hand. On the one hand you use your technology to advance the pursuit of science, and on the other hand you use your scientific knowledge to advance your pursuit of technological capability.

I think that both of these are then best directed towards economic ends.

We have already learned how to make use of energy resources available in space. Solar panels are commonly used to power orbiting satellites. But we have yet to really try to make use of mass/material resources available in space - for example, grabbing some ice out in space to convert into propellant mass or fuel. Since propellant is a critical limiting factor on space missions, I feel it would be imperative to develop some kind of capability to generate new propellant out in space from available resources there.

The main obstacle to this is entering into a foreign gravity well, like the Moon's or Mars, and then having to lift off and come back.
ISRO has talked about doing a mission to an asteroid or a comet, and that might afford an opportunity to demonstrate the ability to suck off some ice and turn it into propellant.

Once you can create propellant out in space, then you have one of the 2 main ingredients necessary for propulsion - the other being energy. Since energy is a fungible commodity that can be supplied from solar energy or even from nuclear power, the question of acquiring materiel for propellant then becomes the greater challenge.

I'm wondering whether ordinary rock could be harnessed as propellant, since that's the most common material out in space. Ice would be more convenient, since it's an ionic crystal that could be more easily melted into a fluid and then utilized by an engine (eg. an ion engine)

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby Sanjay M » 07 Sep 2009 10:03

We can see that with India's overall cost structure being different than the USA's, that this is giving India an advantage in catching up with the USA, including in the space race.

India is making leaps forward in sending payloads to the Moon, and in making future plans for Mars, or in developing new launch vehicles.

Meanwhile, the USA is facing basic questions on how to continue without the Shuttle program:

http://www.usnews.com/articles/news/nat ... plans.html

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby Sanjay M » 07 Sep 2009 10:42

Here are some interesting words from SpaceX founder Elon Musk, describing his quest to achieve "multiplanetary life":

http://www.spectrum.ieee.org/aerospace/ ... business/0


Could India help to make life go multiplanetary? Will it be state-sponsored space agencies or private commercial enterprises which achieve this?

http://www.spectrum.ieee.org/aerospace/ ... ar-nations

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby Sanjay M » 07 Sep 2009 12:17

If India wanted to conduct a nuclear-powered mission in space, then what experience can it draw upon?

Has ISRO/DRDO or anybody ever designed or built RTGs or compact reactors? Has India ever experimentally made a particle-bed reactor?

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby vishwakarmaa » 07 Sep 2009 15:33

[Deleted]

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby Suneet » 07 Sep 2009 16:06

do we have any ISRO/DRDO person here...?
I seek basic information about how extravagant or reverse our plans are in space. And where we stand wrt...

1. quality of scientists we have
2. their age and experience
3. new recruits, their calibre and enthusiasm
4. I believe right now we are lagging behind leaders by large margin... how can we be the leaders.

5. (sidey) - Do we have done any research based on vedas, as suggested that WWII got antigravity intros, rotating mercury etc concepts from vedas...

Any good links with validated information (not opinions) will help me enhance my knowledge. please help.

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby vishwakarmaa » 07 Sep 2009 17:42

The 80% of best brains of India are not in India. They are working for developed countries.

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby Aditya_V » 07 Sep 2009 18:04

vishwakarmaa The 80% of best brains of India are not in India. They are working for developed countries.



Depends on how you define Best. I agree some really talented Indians go abroad for Higher studies and then settle down there. But does not mean everbody in India is nessecarily dumb or suddenly every person who studies in some also ran university in the US, Australia, UK or Canada are not neesecarily becomes super duber, in many they could compete and used thier parents money to sponsor them and then go abroad. Thier only claim to fame being that they are abroad be they be doing Dish washing or a Manger somewhere. I refuse state that just because I am a resident Indian I am nessecarily not part of the 80% of the best brains in India

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Inflatable Heat Shield

Postby Sanjay M » 08 Sep 2009 07:14

Here's a demonstration of a very useful new technology that India should try to develop:




A technology like this should be fairly easy and inexpensive for India to test, and could prove useful for Indian re-entry vehicles, whether for re-entry to Earth or to other planets.

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby Sanjay M » 08 Sep 2009 09:07

More on this:

http://www.aviationweek.com/aw/generic/ ... %20Vehicle

Like I said, this looks like a concept ISRO could easily test using a sounding rocket.

This can easily be seen as an example of a low-cost technology, which is what ISRO likes to brag about.

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby animesharma » 08 Sep 2009 14:14

ISRO plans to build two satellites for environment monitoring
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/news ... 978108.cms

"One (satellite) is mainly for studying aerosols and related things and another one for trace gases (carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide, nitric oxide and sulphur dioxide, among others)," Indian Space Research Organisation chairman G Madhavan Nair said.

No data lost from Chandrayaan: NASA
http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/ET- ... 984787.cms

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Putting Flag on Mars

Postby Sanjay M » 08 Sep 2009 17:58

Regarding this inflatable heat-shield thing, I think that this would be a good way to get our flag onto Mars. With Chandrayaan-1, it was Kalam who said that if we're taking the trouble to go there, then we might as well touch the surface. The part about the flag being painted onto the Moon Impact Probe was not much spoken about originally, but after it hit the Moon, then the govt spared no effort to brag about India having "put its flag on the Moon" (typical politicians)

So likewise, if we're going to take all the trouble to go to Mars, it's only right that we take the opportunity to put our flag down there on the planet's surface. For that, we would need a lightweight re-entry mechanism, like this inflatable heat shield concept. For that reason, India should take steps to develop and test out the technology. It would certainly be an easier technology to test than SRE-1, as shown by NASA's test which only used a mere sounding rocket.

This thing seems to only be an inflatable envelope whose outer layer is a heat-proofed fabric able to withstand a few hundred degreesC. The test was done using just a small sounding rocket. I'm sure ISRO can make something like this if it wanted to - so why don't they try?

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby kriish » 08 Sep 2009 20:35

vishwakarmaa wrote:The 80% of best brains of India are not in India. They are working for developed countries.


i think the brains here are the best one

simple, these brains are involved in nation building

shaping the future of our space exploration

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby Raveen » 08 Sep 2009 21:19

kriish wrote:
vishwakarmaa wrote:The 80% of best brains of India are not in India. They are working for developed countries.


i think the brains here are the best one

simple, these brains are involved in nation building

shaping the future of our space exploration


Please lets not judge the quality, patriotism and intellect of those who stay or leave...let's judge the outcome of our endeavours as a nation

mera juta hai japani, yeh patloon englishtani, sur pe laal topi roosi...phir bhi dil hai hindustani

Pls no more OT on this thread. pls CONTRIBUTE

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Soft Landing for Putting Indian Flag on Mars

Postby Sanjay M » 09 Sep 2009 05:53

After Australia's successful HyShot test at Woomera using a sounding rocket, I noticed that ISRO also quickly announced that it would do a similar test. I think that perhaps the low cost of the HyShot test probably caught their notice, and it was felt that such a test would be easy to replicate. That's why I'm thinking that this Inflatable Re-entry Vehicle test should be replicated by ISRO as well, because it also looks to be low-cost, and useful for future Indian missions.



http://www.nasa.gov/topics/aeronautics/ ... /irve.html

http://www.nasa.gov/pdf/378699main_NASAFacts-IRVE.pdf


I'm sure that India could come up with a similar inflatable design, to test the basic concept. Then later on they could develop more advanced aerobody designs to similarly test.

Does anyone remember that book, The Deltoid Pumpkinseed? It was about the effort to make some kind of inflatable airship having a deltoid shape.

I'm imagining that after proving the basic concept of the inflatable aeroshell using a conventional round shape, then further efforts could be focused on making a more advanced inflatable aeroshell having a deltoid shape. Such an inflatable aeroshell could perhaps be used to augment a re-entry vehicle having a basic blunt body shape, like a space capsule, to make it a lifting body. In the event that the aeroshell failed to inflate and give the vehicle a deltoid lifting body shape, then the vehicle's own innate basic blunt body design would still be there to provide a stable blunt body entry into the atmosphere. That way, as a fallback, the vehicle would still have a stable re-entry, although it might not be able to fly/steer towards the landing site in the ideal way.

Again, an inflatable aeroshell could allow the upcoming ISRO mission to Mars to achieve a soft landing even more cheaply than Chandrayaan-2. India could then have its flag on Mars, as well as an instrument package on the surface, sending back useful data.

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby Sanjay M » 09 Sep 2009 07:59

Another good mission India should try for, would be a mission like the Kepler planet-finding telescope:

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/32680724/ns ... nce-space/

Scientists have shown that Kepler is sensitive enough to even be able to find moons around planets orbiting other stars.

All the politicians would be tickled to have newly discovered planets named after their kids - that alone would ensure lots of funding :P

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby animesharma » 09 Sep 2009 16:54

Satellites flying in formation over Asia
http://www.atimes.com/atimes/China/KI02Ad01.html

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby Sanjay M » 11 Sep 2009 09:51

So when is GSLV Mk-3 due for its maiden launch?
At what point are things at now?

Will there eventually be a GSLV Mk-4 vehicle launched? If so, when?
Or will efforts instead immediately move towards building Unified Modular Launch Vehicle?
Or would GSLV Mk-4 and UMLV be the same thing?

If UMLV is developed, then where does RLV fit into the plan?
Is it that RLV would be for more frequent, lightweight manned missions to LEO only, while UMLV would be for heavier unmanned payloads to various different orbits?

How many families of launch vehicle is India looking to end up with?

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby Sanjay M » 12 Sep 2009 11:36

ISRO is reacting to the Chandrayaan-1 malfunction by quickly moving to replace computer systems on its upcoming satellites scheduled for launch:

http://www.expressbuzz.com/edition/stor ... s7i|xOZ5Y=


In the comments section, someone made a remark that the moonrover for Chandrayaan-2 should be nuclear-powered, in order to facilitate exploration of the permanently dark regions near the poles, to see once and for all if there is water there.

Which would be the more precious resource on the Moon -- water or Helium-3?
I would say water, if it was found in sufficient quantities, because it would be critical to sustaining a manned colony. Water could also be used as propellant for launching off the Moon's surface, whether returning toward Earth or going on to Mars.
Meanwhile, nobody has even figured out how to fuse hydrogen atoms, let alone the more difficult task of fusing helium.
Besides, we already know where to find the Helium-3 distributed on the Moon, since the solar wind would more or less deposit it uniformly (although if anything, it might be the polar regions that have more of the 3He, since any magnetic field lines from the Moon's early magnetized period would have concentrated it there)

I think that finding water on the Moon should take priority over prospecting for helium, although there's no reason why a nuclear-powered rover couldn't do both.

If India puts a rover on the Moon ahead of China, then they will be sorely embarrassed by it, and I hope our usual crowing really rubs it in.

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby KrishG » 12 Sep 2009 15:00

Sanjay M wrote:So when is GSLV Mk-3 due for its maiden launch?
At what point are things at now?


There was supposed to be the Mk-III SRB test firing in Feb 2009. Hasn't happened! :evil: :evil:
The work on the SRBs are more or less completed including the new thrust vectoring sys. The L110is also completed. I am expecting a full stage test firing next year 1st quarter. CE-20's design is complete. It has to be constructed and then test fired and then integrated with the propellant assembly, which will be followed be followed by a full stage firing. I don't expect it to happen before 2nd quarter of 2011 (at the earliest :roll: ) Maybe ISRO will be able to launch Mk III somewhere in the fourth quarter of 2011 at the earliest or probably in the middle 2012.

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby KrishG » 12 Sep 2009 15:19

Sanjay M wrote:Will there eventually be a GSLV Mk-4 vehicle launched? If so, when?
Or will efforts instead immediately move towards building Unified Modular Launch Vehicle?
Or would GSLV Mk-4 and UMLV be the same thing?


I don't see a Mk-4 as all funding would be poured into UMLV(which is a good thing).

UMLV is not a single launcher but a family of launchers (maybe very close to Angara) all whose basis will be the 2MN LOX/RP-1 engine under development. It will be more economical and easier to manufacture.

Sanjay M wrote:If UMLV is developed, then where does RLV fit into the plan?


UMLV will be of the payload category of 2-3 tons to how much ever required to LEO. The RLV's capability is predicted to be 1 ton to LEO (TSTO version).

Sanjay M wrote:Is it that RLV would be for more frequent, lightweight manned missions to LEO only, while UMLV would be for heavier unmanned payloads to various different orbits?

There is no RLV yet, so thinking of a manned RLV would be unrealistic. Anyway, it willn't be powerful enough to launch humans. Conventional launches are the way to go until the RLV technology is mastered.

Sanjay M wrote:How many families of launch vehicle is India looking to end up with?

The eventual plan is to have a family of modular launch vehicles (UMLV) for medium, mid-heavy, heavy and super-heavy lifting and the RLV for light launches. The only exception could be the man-rated GSLV. Human-rated launchers are a huge investment and they tend to be in service for a longer periods of time.

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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby Sanjay M » 12 Sep 2009 23:05

KrishG wrote:I don't see a Mk-4 as all funding would be poured into UMLV(which is a good thing).


What is the estimate on how long it will be before UMLV is in place as a working launch system?

UMLV is not a single launcher but a family of launchers (maybe very close to Angara) all whose basis will be the 2MN LOX/RP-1 engine under development. It will be more economical and easier to manufacture.


Yes, I'd seen you all compare UMLV to Angara before, in this forum. Other than Russia's Angara, does anyone else have a comparable system in development? The closest thing I can see is the Falcon family of rockets from budding private launcher SpaceX.

UMLV will be of the payload category of 2-3 tons to how much ever required to LEO. The RLV's capability is predicted to be 1 ton to LEO (TSTO version).


Are all types of payload-weights equally likely? Which are the main payload weight ranges that would be expected to be serviced? I'm assuming that UMLV could be used to service the wider global launch market just as easily as it could be used to serve Indian needs.

There is no RLV yet, so thinking of a manned RLV would be unrealistic. Anyway, it willn't be powerful enough to launch humans. Conventional launches are the way to go until the RLV technology is mastered.


Fair enough, I keep unconsciously thinking of RLV as a smaller version of the US Space Shuttle.
I'm thinking that RLV should only be developed as a scramjet anyway, which implies a narrower fuselage in which it's harder to accommodate larger payload sizes.

I'm thinking it should take off horizontally using rocket engines, then switch to scramjet in upper atmosphere when it reaches sufficient mach number, and then after scramjet acceleration has been maxed out while collecting more oxygen, finally switch back to rockets again for ascent to LEO.
I feel RLV should only evolve from a reusable scramjet vehicle, which itself is a project that should jointly be pursued with another country like Russia, as part of an intercontinental rapid-transportation solution. Even if you can't build a full-sized airliner with scramjet technology, you could perhaps build a 20-passenger vehicle and charge high prices to VIPs.

The eventual plan is to have a family of modular launch vehicles (UMLV) for medium, mid-heavy, heavy and super-heavy lifting and the RLV for light launches. The only exception could be the man-rated GSLV. Human-rated launchers are a huge investment and they tend to be in service for a longer periods of time.


That's why the cost of developing a man-rated SSTO vehicle should be spread to the regular commercial transportation market by way of a RLV-scramjet type of vehicle. The intercontinental rapid-travel market that was serviced by Concorde may face weaker demand than the broader conventional air travel market, but it's still much stronger than the space travel market.
Besides, now that the era of globalization has dawned, there is a greater demand for rapid intercontinental travel.

I sometimes wonder whether very high mach conditions in the upper atmosphere / ionosphere could support MHD/plasma propulsion, with its higher efficiency but lower thrust for longer acceleration period. Also, forming a plasma envelope around the vehicle would radically reduce its aerodynamic drag and thus its thermal heating at high mach conditions, which would be good for a high-mach craft.
The MHD/plasma propulsion would be powered by a small compact particle-bed nuclear reactor.
So, once again, 2 modes -- rocket plus MHD. Rocket motors let you take off from the ground horizontally, and gets you upto high mach conditions in the upper atmosphere/ionosphere, and then MHD takes over to achieve most of the required escape velocity over a longer acceleration period through the upper atmosphere/ionosphere where there is opportunity to collect oxygen. After enough oxygen has been collected, then rockets take over again to let you leave the atmosphere and proceed to LEO.

Furthermore, the technology used to maintain a plasma envelope for drag-reduction purposes in the upper atmosphere/ionosphere could eventually evolve into mechanism for maintaining a space-borne plasma envelope/bubble of very large radius for protecting astronauts and spacecraft against radiation. Just as the ionosphere protects the Earth and its inhabitants against radiation, a spacecraft could carry its own ionosphere in the form of a plasma bubble, as an absorbent barrier against high-energy EM radiation, which would otherwise be impossible to stop.
That way, the solar outbursts that broke down Chandrayaan-1 would not similarly imperil manned missions.

KrishG
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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby KrishG » 13 Sep 2009 00:02

What is the estimate on how long it will be before UMLV is in place as a working launch system?


2025 at the earliest.

Yes, I'd seen you all compare UMLV to Angara before, in this forum. Other than Russia's Angara, does anyone else have a comparable system in development? The closest thing I can see is the Falcon family of rockets from budding private launcher SpaceX.


Chinese CZ-5 family, Atlas-V and the preliminary designs for Ariane-6.

Are all types of payload-weights equally likely? Which are the main payload weight ranges that would be expected to be serviced? I'm assuming that UMLV could be used to service the wider global launch market just as easily as it could be used to serve Indian needs.


4-6 tons satellites to GTO are more common. It was previously believed that the weight of GTO sats would go on increasing to 8-10 tons. But, that hasn't happened. That's one of the reasons ESA wants Ariane-6. The present Ariane-5 sits between these figures with the capability of 10 tons to GTO. So, it has to get more powerful for feasible dual-launches and dual-launches has it's own drawbacks. The 4-6 ton to GTO category is common and market trends suggests that it would remain the same.

Gerard
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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby Gerard » 13 Sep 2009 03:18


prao
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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby prao » 13 Sep 2009 03:56

This doesn't make sense to me. How do you replace something as crucial as a bus management unit at such short notice - that too on a spacecraft waiting to be integrated to the launch vehicle? Anything put on a spacecraft needs to be individually qualified which isn't a quick process. The failure of the Chandrayaan wasn't that long ago and the determination that the onboard computers had failed is even more recent. Any comments?

http://tinyurl.com/rann4w

KOCHI: Stung by the finding that the failure of the Chandrayaan was mainly due to the malfunction of onboard computers, the Indian Space Research Organisation has decided to replace the processing units on all future satellites, including two scheduled for immediate launch.

A decision to equip the Oceansat- 2 and GSat-4 with a new bus management unit (BMU) instead of the existing one has already been taken. Currently ISRO uses a standard type of central computer unit in all satellites. This in-house developed system is a time-tested control unit which has flown on many satellites. But following the Chandrayaan fiasco due to poor thermal management, every component was scrutinised and re-evaluated.

Following this a high level decision to re-install the most crucial component was immediately taken.

The urgency was such that the replacement was done on Oceansat while it was waiting to be integrated with the launch vehicle.

(Oceansat-2 will be in orbit by the year end to boost India’s oceanographic studies. This satellite will also aid fishermen by giving them a clear indication of the presence and type of fish at various depths.) ...etc. etc.

Gagan
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Re: Indian Space Program Discussion

Postby Gagan » 13 Sep 2009 06:17

So the ocean sat can find shoals of fish at various depths in the ocean.

Great!!!

Now who wants to tell me how it can find silently moving 3000-15000 ton larger 'fishes' in the ocean depths?


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