From Sun To Mars: Here Are The Upcoming ISRO Missions

Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) is known as the most cost-effective space agency of all. With the advancement of time, the organisation is helping mankind to get a step closer towards the exploration of the deepest mysteries of cosmos, along with paving the way for future space settlements for humans.

Founded on August 15, 1969, the organisation has progressed much further in technologies as well as grabbing the world's attention. All set with its future mission, the organisation may prove to be catastrophic for others. Here is a list of some of its most awaited future missions.

  1. Chandrayaan-2 (2018)

Considered the most significant mission of 2018, Chandrayaan-2 will be India's second mission aimed for the moon. The main objective of the mission is to study the lunar topography to open new pathways for future space exploration.  Along with the orbiter, it consists a lander and a rover planned to be deployed at moon’s south pole. Learn more about the mission here.


2. GSAT-11 (2018)

GSAT-11 will be the biggest satellite ever made by ISRO. Weighing over 5.7 tonnes, the satellite will launch from French Guiana atop an Ariane 5 rocket. The GSAT-11 is a multi-beam high throughput communication satellite operating in Ka and Ku-bands employing a new bus. It provides 32 user beams in Ku-band and 8 gateway beams in Ka-band, with an approximate cost of Rs. 500 crore($ 72 million)

  1. RLV-TD (2020)

Reusable Launch Vehicle – Technology Demonstrator project is a first step towards realizing a Two-Stage-To-Orbit re-usable launch vehicle. The craft uses an air-breathing/scramjet engine which might bring down the cost of launch from $5000/kg to $500/kg. Since the engine is semi-cryogenic, it need not carry heavy oxidizers and hence will be around 80% lighter than a conventional rocket. The rocket will allow ISRO to position a payload of over 10 tonnes into geosynchronous orbit.

  1. Aditya solar mission (2020)

Aditya-L1 will the ISRO’s first attempt to study the sun. Weighing around 400 kg, the missions will be inserted in an orbit around L1 (Lagrangian point 1), around 1.5 million km from earth. Along with carrying visible emission line corona-graph (VELC), it carries an additional of 6 payloads with enhanced science scope and objectives which will study the solar corona and the reason for its heating effect.

Illustration of Aditya L1
  1. NISAR (2021)

The NASA-ISRO Synthetic Aperture Radar (NISAR) mission is a joint project between NASA and ISRO. The mission aims to develop and launch a dual frequency Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) satellite. While NASA gonna provide the L-band SAR, a payload data subsystem, a solid state recorder and GPS receiver, ISRO will aim to provide launch vehicle, S-band SAR, spacecraft bus and some services. The project has an allocated budget of over $ 1 Billion.

6. Mangalyaan-2 (2022)

Mars Orbiter Mission 2 (MOM 2) is India's second interplanetary mission planned for launch to Mars. It is a fully indigenous mission which consists of an orbiter, and would probably include a lander and a rover. Mangalyaan-2 may launch atop GSLV MK III and is expected to last for a year.

Illustration of Mangalyaan-2

7. Venusian Orbiter Mission (2023)

The Venusian Orbiter Mission (Shukrayaan, derived from Sanskrit, "Shukra" meaning “Venus” and “Yaan” meaning “vehicle”) is a planned orbiter to Venus to study the scorching atmosphere of the planet. The payload capability of the proposed satellite is likely to be 175 kg with 500 W of power. Initial elliptical orbit around Venus is expected to have 500 km periapsis and 60,000 km apoapsis which might be reduced over months.

8. Human spaceflight project (~)

The Indian human Spaceflight programme is a proposal by ISRO to develop and launch a two-person crew to low Earth orbit. With Russia, USA, and China being the only countries to have successfully conducted human space flight program, ISRO is hoping to reserve the 4th place for itself. Due to ISRO’s low budget, the project might be taken up only after 2024.

9. Avatar (2025)

Aerobic Vehicle for TransAtmopheric Hypersonic Aerospace Transportation” is a conceptual single-stage reusable spacecraft capable of horizontal takeoff and landing. Avatar is projected to weigh 25 tons, of which 60% of that mass would be liquid hydrogen fuel. The oxygen required by the vehicle for combustion in outer space would be collected from the atmosphere during takeoff, thus reducing the need to carry oxygen during launch. The vehicle would have a Turbo-Ramjet, Scramjet and a Cryogenic engine.

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