The space agency has conducted several ground tests, and other tests are still being done. Once all the testing is successful, the cryogenic stage will be integrated into the GSLV vehicle for the launch, another space agency official says.
The two GSLV failures led ISRO to take a cautious approach in resuming launch operations, he adds.
The VSSC is also working on the next variant of GSLV Mk.3 launch vehicles. The GSLV Mk.3 is designed to launch communications satellites weighing more than 4 metric tons – about 8,800 lb. – once it begins orbital flights in 2014.
“This will make India totally self-reliant in the area of launch vehicles,” Veeraraghavan says
The center is also developing reusable launch vehicles that can deliver a spacecraft into the orbit and return for repeat use. This will bring down the cost of space transport, he adds.
ISRO plans to launch GSLV at least twice before placing the country’s second robotic lunar mission – Chandrayaan 2 – on the launcher for a flight to the Moon in 2014.
GSLV photo: ISRO