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Satish Dhawan Space Centre First Launch Pad

The First Launch Pad[1] of the Satish Dhawan Space Centre is a rocket launch site in Sriharikota, India that began operation in 1993. It is currently used by two launch vehicles of the ISRO: the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) and the Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle (GSLV). It is one of two operational orbital launch pads at the site, the other being the Second Launch Pad,[2] which opened in 2005. The first launch from this pad occurred on 20 September 1993, and was the maiden flight of the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle carrying the IRS-1E satellite.

First Launch Pad
PSLV C-35 at the launch pad.jpg
PSLV C35 on First Launch Pad
Launch siteSatish Dhawan Space Centre
Location13°43′59″N 80°14′06″E / 13.733°N 80.235°E / 13.733; 80.235
Short nameFLP
OperatorIndia ISRO
Launch pad(s)One
Launch history
StatusActive
Launches36
First launch20 September 1993
PSLV / IRS-P1
Last launch24 January 2019
PSLV-DL / PSLV-C44
Associated
rockets
PSLV
GSLV

LaunchesEdit

As of November 2013, 19 PSLVs (1 Failure, 1 Partial Success & 17 Fully Successful)[3] and 3 GSLVs (1 Failure & 2 Fully Successful) have been launched from here. The latest one was the successful launch of PSLV-C33 on 28 April 2016 carrying IRNSS-1G, India's seventh and last satellite of the Indian Regional Navigational system Satellites. Prime Minister Narendra Modi gave a brief speech about the launch.

FacilitiesEdit

 
PM Modi visits Satish Dhawan Space Centre First Launch Pad in June 2014; Launch Vehicle seen in the backdrop.

"The individual stages of PSLV or GSLV, their subsystems and the spacecraft are prepared and checked out in separate facilities before they are sent to launch pad for integration A-76-meter tall mobile service tower (MST) facilitates the vertical integration of the vehicle. The foldable working platforms of MST provide access to the vehicle at various elevations. A massive launch pedestal, made up of steel plates, acts as the base on which the vehicle is integrated."[4]

"The spacecraft is integrated to the vehicle in a clean room, set up inside the MST. However, in the case of GSLV, the spacecraft is interfaced with the payload adopter and then encapsulated in the heat shield in the preparation facility itself. The encapsulated assembly is moved to the launch pad for integrating with the 3rd stage of GSLV. The umbilical tower houses the feed lines for liquid propellants and high-pressure gases, checkout cables, and chilled air duct for supplying cool air to the satellite and equipment bay."[4]

The first launch pad is undergoing major expansion with PIF (PSLV Integration Facilities) project worth 475 crore (US$69 million) . Once complete, the first launch pad is expected to cater to around 15 launches per year. [5]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "Launch Facility". Indian Space Research Organisation. Archived from the original on 17 April 2010. Retrieved 11 April 2010.
  2. ^ "ISRO planning big missions this year". New Indian Express. Kerala, India. The New Indian Express. 28 February 2013. Retrieved 6 March 2013.
  3. ^ See the Wikipedian page List of Satish Dhawan Space Centre launches
  4. ^ a b Public domain text sourced from the link - ISRO Launch Facilities
  5. ^ "PIF Project". Prajasakti.