ISRO RLV To Attempt Landing In Karnataka


ISRO is developing a space program for Reusable Launch Vehicles (RLV). The ISRO RLV program has been under tests since 2016 and will attempt its landing soon. Following the footsteps of SpaceX and NASA, the Indian Space Research Organisation RLV program attempts to reduce the cost of satellite launches with reusable spacecraft.

ISRO RLV Tests Spacecraft


ISRO RLV Program

The ISRO RLV project is currently using the hybrid design, which is similar to SpaceX's reusable rockets. The Indian RLV is a shuttle-like spacecraft that might be equipped with an air-breathing ramjet engine. The mission is to take the payload to space and then land back on Earth, like a normal aircraft. As much as it feels like science fiction, ISRO is setting the field to test the RLV.

ISRO has developed the RLV rocket to the shuttle to the orbit and return on Earth, just like SpaceX's Falcon 9 rockets. The reusable space shuttle is designed to return to Earth with its own thrust force to land on a floating platform in the sea. So far, ISRO has been testing the RLV over water, and will soon be tested overland for an actual landing.

ISRO RLV Tests Spacecraft

Four Test Points Of ISRO RLV

ISRO has four RLV aspects that need to be tested. These include Hypersonic Flight Experiment (HEX) that tests the hypersonic flight; Landing Experiment (LEX) that tests autonomous landing; Powered Cruise Flight; and lastly, Scramjet Propulsion Experiment (SPEX) where the hypersonic flight is tested with air-breathing propulsion.


During the upcoming tests, ISRO plans to recover and reuse two stages of the rocket. The first stage recovery will be carried out using a similar principle as the SpaceX Falcon 9 boosters, where the rockets will land on a landing strip in the sea after the launch. The second stage is an advanced one of the RLV where ISRO engineers attempt to land on an airstrip, after which it can be used again for a second launch.

ISRO RLV Tests In Karnataka

ISRO will be attempting the new test for the RLV at the Aeronautical Test Range in Challakere in Chitradurga district. A report by Deccan Chronicle says there's an onboard computer that will assist the RLV to glide to a distance and touchdown on the runway, just like an aircraft.

The upcoming ISRO RLV tests are crucial for ISRO's next big mission- Gaganyaan, where ISRO plans to test human space flight. The RLV is important to cut down the costs of the launches that will be channeled for other space researches.

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