India ground tests cryogenic engine successfully

Chennai, July 20 (IANS) India successfully ground tested its high-thrust cryogenic rocket engine at Mahendragiri complex in Tamil Nadu, the space agency said on Monday.

In a statement here, the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) said the country’s first indigenously-designed and developed, high thrust cryogenic rocket engine was hot-tested for endurance for 800 seconds on July 16.

The test was conducted at ISRO’s propulsion complex at Mahendragiri in Tirunelvelli district, around 680 km from here.

“This duration is approximately 25 percent more than the engine burn duration in flight,” the ISRO said.

The engine will be used for powering India’s heaviest rocket under development – the geosynchronous satellite launch vehicle (GSLV) Mk-III with a capacity to put into orbit satellites weighing four tons.

The cryogenic engine uses low temperature propellants liquid hydrogen and liquid oxygen.

ISRO said that the high performance cryogenic engine was designed and developed at its Liquid Propulsion Systems Centre (LPSC) in Kerala.

The LPSC has also developed a smaller cryogenic engine (12.5 ton propellant) and successfully flight tested it in GSLV Mk-II vehicle on January 5, 2014.

The bigger cryogenic engine has higher fuel capacity of 27 ton as compared to 12.5 ton that powers GSLV Mk-II.

The July 16 successful endurance hot test of the first high thrust cryogenic engine is the tenth test in a series of tests planned and executed as part of the development of the engine employing complex cryogenic technology.

The performance of the engine closely matches with the pre-test prediction made using the in-house developed cryogenic engine mathematical modelling and simulation software, ISRO claimed.

As part of the cryogenic engine development, further tests are planned in high altitude conditions and in full engine/stage configuration.

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