India advances bid to become global launch service hub

July 3, 2006

(Press Trust of India via NewsEdge) India's effort to become a leader in the highly competitive global satellite launch services market is gathering steam with the cost-effectiveness of its spaceport.

The Satish Dhawan Space Centre has in it the potential to emerge as a global hub, rivaling similar facilities in Europe and the US, according to officials of the Indian Space Research Organisation.

In fact, a beginning has been made with the launch of Korean, Belgian and German payloads in the past. While similar ones from elsewhere are in the pipeline, ISRO has bigger things in mind.

ISRO is now developing a new launch vehicle, GSLV -Mk III, which will be capable of launching up to four tons into geosynchronous transfer orbit. The first prototype is expected to be ready some time in 2008 or 2009.

c 2006 Asia Pulse Pte Ltd

c 2006 Dialog, a Thomson business. All rights reserved