After years of R&D, India recently conducted a successful test flight of the indigenously developed Hypersonic technology demonstrator vehicle (HSTDV), powered by a scramjet engine, which will serve as a critical building block for next-generation Hypersonic cruise missiles, joining the elite club of the US, Russia and China who possess such technology. Hypersonic missiles that fly at lower altitudes and are very onerous to trace and intercept. Currently, the United States, Russia and China have only developed technologies to field fast-manoeuvring of it. This is often seen as India’s initial footstep towards developing Hypersonic missiles. It is in this context, Let’s make an in-depth analysis of Hypersonic missile technology.
Recently a decentralized, bottom-up, and inclusive process for the formulation of a new national Science Technology and Innovation Policy (STIP 2020) was jointly initiated by the Office of the Principal Scientific Adviser to the Government of India (Office of PSA) and the Department of Science and Technology (DST). The policy is being formulated at a crucial time when India and the world are facing the COVID-19 pandemic and finding ways to tackle it.
The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) announced that India’s 2nd lunar mission Chandrayaan-2 is scheduled to be launched in July 2019. The Chandrayaan-2’s lander will touch down near Moon’s south pole in September 2019. This mission holds so much significance for Indian and international space research which we will discuss in this article.
Recently, the DRDO’s anti-satellite missile system (ASAT) project named Mission Shakti successfully destroyed a live satellite in the Low Earth Orbit (LEO) (300 km altitude). With this test, India became the fourth country after the US, Russia, and China to achieve the feat. It is considered to be a milestone for the institutions and a significant development in terms of strengthening the country’s overall security. However, the test also sparked controversy regarding space militarization and space debris.
ISRO has launched GSAT-29 communication satellite successfully on board GSLV-MK III D2. With this launch, GSLV-MK III is considered to be operational for space missions like Chandrayaan II and Gaganyaan. Gaganyaan mission was announced by Prime Minister in his Independence Day speech, that ISRO will be sending its first human spaceflight mission into space by 2022.
ISRO has launched GSAT-29 communication satellite successfully on board GSLV-Mk III D2 from Satish Dhawan Space Centre at Sriharikota. With this launch, GSLV Mk III completed the test flights and is declared operational, thus joining the ranks of the working vehicles such as PSLV. Besides, this launch serves as a major boost for Chandrayaan-II (moon) and Gaganyaan (manned) missions.
ISRO will soon carry out another major test for its Reusable Launch Vehicle (RLV) in 2019. ISRO conducted first RLV test in 2016 which was successful. The final version will take at least 10-15 years to get ready.