Five reasons why ISRO is a force to be reckoned with

In celebration of Wednesday’s achievement, here is a list of ISRO’s achievements that make it stand apart from everyone else.

Written by Swapnil Mathur | New Delhi | Updated: February 16, 2017 4:55 pm
ISRO, ISRO satellite launch, ISRO PSLV C-37, ISRO rocket launch, ISRO satellites, ISRO world record, ISRO news, India news ISRO today successfully launched the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle C37 into orbit. The rocket launched 104 satellites into orbit.

On Wednesday, the Indian Space Research Organization added a significant notch to its belt. By successfully launching the PSLV-C37, ISRO has pushed a whopping 104 satellites into orbit, a new world record. The previous word record was held by the Russians, for launching a paltry 37 satellites into space. ISRO has a glorious history of achievements that helped propel not just India into the Space Age, but also push others globally to aim higher and further. In celebration of today’s achievement, here is a list of ISRO’s achievements that make it stand apart from everyone else

WATCH VIDEO | ”Selfie” Footage Released By ISRO Of What Happened After PSLV-C37 Rocket Launch

Incredible 104 Satellite Launch

ISRO today successfully launched the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle C37 into orbit. The rocket launched 104 satellites of which three are Indian, 88 are from the USA and the rest from Germany, Israel, Kazakhstan, the Netherlands, Switzerland, and the United Arab Emirates. The previous record was held by Russia’s Dnepr rocket which launched 37 satellites into space, but India’s achievement today overshoots that by a long margin.

Big Achievements, Small Costs

The PSLV-C37 cost a measly $15 million to launch. In comparison, it costs SpaceX roughly $60 million to do the same. NASA used to spend north of $100 million to send satellites into space, a cost so high that they found SpaceX to be a far lucrative offer. India, of all the space-capable nations, has the lowest cost for sending satellites into space.

ISRO’s other major achievement was the Mars Orbiter Mission (MOM) or the Mangalyaan mission as it was fondly called. The Mars Orbiter was launched in November 2013, was India’s first inter-planetary mission and cost the nation just $73 million (Rs. 450 crore). It was also the least expensive mission to Mars ever. In comparison, NASA’s MAVEN Mars Orbiter cost $672 million.

WATCH VIDEO | Why Is ISRO’s PSLV-C37 Rocket Launch With Record 104 Satellites Important?

Made in India, Designed for the World

India is a nation known for keeping its costs low. Currently, the PSLV launched 104 satellites into space for a cost of $15 million. It should be noted that the PSLV is not a reusable rocket. While SpaceX still struggle to get their Falcon 9 rockets to land reliably after re-entry, ISRO has already successfully tested the Reusable satellite Launch Vehicle (RLV) in 2016. While ISRO already offers incredibly lucrative pricing for satellite launches, successfully deploying a reusable flight system would bring down costs even further.

Failure is not an option

The PSLV system has been used 39 times for launching payload into Low Earth Orbit. Of these 39 launches, ISRO has suffered only one true failure, the maiden flight of the PSLV rocket in 1993. The 1997 launch was considered a partial failure because the rocket failed to launch the satellite into the desired circular orbit. However, the satellite could propel itself into orbit and was not lost. SpaceX has suffered two notable failures, one of the CRS-7 139 seconds into flight and the more recent explosion of the AMOS-6 while it was on the Launchpad, being loaded with propellant. Both the failures came with a significant cost to not just SpaceX, but the companies whose payload was being launched into orbit. India’s ISRO has an edge over the competitors when it comes to safety and consistency. In case you didn’t know, the Mars Orbiter Mission was the first time India attempted an inter-planetary mission and nailed it in its first attempt.

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At the Vanguard of the Space Age

India’s space program isn’t just about launching satellites into space. The Space Agency has lofty goals in-line with the global leaders; exploration of our solar system being one among them. ISRO is currently working on sending a probe to Venus, the second planet, and possibly the most hostile, in our solar system. In fact, ISRO has a mission to Mars and Venus slated for 2021-2022 time frame. While France has expressed strong interest in collaborating on building the next Mars Rover for India’s mission to Mars, Michael M. Watkins, Director of the Jet Propulsion Laboratory of NASA, said that the agency was keen on putting a telematics module which would enable NASA’s rover to talk to India’s satellites. Watkins further said that NASA would definitely be willing to partner in India’s maiden voyage to Venus as so little is known about the planet. NASA and ISRO have already initiated talks on trying to jointly undertake studies on using electrical propulsion for powering this mission. Former ISRO chairman K. Kasturirangan says, “India should be part of this global adventure and exploring Venus and Mars is very worthwhile since humans definitely need another habitation beyond Earth.”

The Indian Space Research Organization has been making great strides in the last few years. While NASA has seen significant budget cuts in the last few years, ISRO just received a boost in funding thanks to the Finance Minister Arun Jaitley giving the Department of Space a 23% increase in operating budget this year. We wish ISRO the very best for its upcoming launches and the Mission to Mars and Venus.

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  1. K
    Ketan
    Feb 15, 2017 at 9:16 am
    You can't compare SpaceX landing their first stage rocket with ISRO's reusable vehicle because SpaceX is already landing the falcon 9 rockets reliably after delivering an actual payload to orbit while ISRO hasn't used it's reusable vehicle since testing the prototype. In fact ISRO's reusable vehicle still hasn't delivered any actual payload and returned successfully. So let's give the proper credit to the right people without being blinded by bias towards ISRO. ISROs achievement of putting 104 satellites into orbit is definitely a moment of pride for India and the space industry as a w.
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    1. M
      Moon
      Feb 15, 2017 at 5:13 pm
      ISRO beats NASA sets World Record: Sends record 104 satellites in one go.lt;br/gt;
      Reply
      1. S
        Satyam
        Feb 15, 2017 at 11:45 am
        Congratulations to the all isro team we proudly say we are indians
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          ANS
          Feb 15, 2017 at 9:50 am
          ISRO and DRDO outsource their research problems to IITs in exchange for M. Tech and PhDs for their scientists who are recruited as B Tech p outs.lt;br/gt;lt;br/gt;IIT professors and students do all the work for ISRO and DRDO while the ISRO and DRDO scientists take all the credit for it.lt;br/gt;lt;br/gt;Most of their other technology is simply copied from other countries.lt;br/gt;lt;br/gt;It is a source of happiness to see ISRO successful but this success is not sustainable as the very basic model of this success is wrong and inadequate.
          Reply
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            ajith maharaj
            Feb 15, 2017 at 2:08 pm
            And on the other side ,stan gave birth to 104 terrorists ,,,south african indian
            Reply
            1. A
              ajith maharaj
              Feb 15, 2017 at 2:06 pm
              Well done to india and isro from a south african indian
              Reply
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                albert savio
                Feb 15, 2017 at 9:57 am
                fully agree with you One need not be jingoistic take practical view on matters. lt;br/gt;lt;br/gt;Well done ISRO. U did this well and we expect more to come / but others incl Space X are doing their thing very well and they too deserve our praise.
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                  abcd
                  Feb 15, 2017 at 9:45 am
                  The FORCE is very strong with ISRO
                  Reply
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