India: India’s quest to achieve total independence in cryogenic engine technology failed on Thursday when its Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle, GSLV – D3, tumbled into the Bay of Bengal. This happened after the indigenous cryogenic engine ignited on time 304 seconds after the lift-off but the two steering engines of the cryogenic stage appeared not to have ignited. The launch vehicle was carrying a 2200 kg communication satellite with a navigation payload.
These two steering engines control the pitch, roll and yaw of the rocket. K. Radhakrishnan, Chairman, Indian Space Research Organisation told the ISRO scientists and engineers in the mission control centre that the performance of the vehicle was normal up to the second stage. And it was speeding at a velocity of 4.9 km per second. Indications were that the cryogenic engine ignited. “However, we saw the vehicle tumbling and losing control as the two vernier (steering) engines may not have ignited.
We will put all efforts to ensure that the next flight with the indigenous cryogenic engine takes place within a year”, he said.”
Dr. Radhakrishnan added that ISRO took 18 years to develop this complex cryogenic technology. He said it would have be confirmed whether the cryogenic engine ignited.
Source: The Hindu