Agnikul Cosmos inaugurates India’s first private space vehicle launchpad in Sriharikota

The launchpad is specifically built keeping in mind the ability to support the liquid stage controlled launches, while also addressing the need for ISRO’s range operations team to monitor the key flight safety parameters during the launches.

India’s first private space vehicle launchpad
India’s first private space vehicle launchpad

Private Sector in Space Research: India’s first launchpad and mission control center operated by a private player has been inaugurated at the Satish Dhawan Space Center in Sriharikota.

The announcement was made by Agnikul Cosmos on November 28, 2022. The startup which is incubated at the Indian Institute of Technology, Madras also plans on launching its customizable Agnibaan Rocket from the launchpad at the end of 2022.

Notably, the inauguration of India’s first private launchpad and mission control center was done by the Chairman of the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) S Somnath.

India’s first private launchpad: Significance

The launchpad is specifically built keeping in mind the ability to support the liquid stage controlled launches, while also addressing the need for ISRO’s range operations team to monitor the key flight safety parameters during the launches.

It also has the ability to share data and other critical information with ISRO’s Mission Control Center.

India’s first private space vehicle launchpad & mission control centre

1. The facility has two parts-the Agnikul launchpad and the Agnikul mission control centre- which are four kms apart.

2. All the critical systems connecting these two sections, which are roughly 4km away from each other, will ensure 100 percent operability during the countdown.

3. As per Agnikul Cosmos, the launchpad was designed to accommodate and support liquid stage-controlled launches.

4. The Chennai-based startup also plans to launch its Agnibaan rocket from its launchpad.

About Agnibaan Rocket

Agnibaan is a two-stage launch vehicle which is capable of taking payloads of up to 100 kilograms to a low-earth orbit around 700 kilometers from the Surface of the Earth.

The Agnibaan rocket will be powered by the company’s 3-D printed Agnilet engines. The Agnilet rocket is a semi-cryogenic engine that uses a mixture of liquid kerosene and supercold liquid oxygen to propel itself. Agnikul test-fired the Agnilet engine at ISRO’s facilities earlier this year.

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