ISRO’s Next-Gen Launch Vehicle

ISRO’s Next-Gen Launch Vehicle

ISRO’s Next-Gen Launch Vehicle

#GS-03 Science and Technology

For Prelims

About Next-Gen Launch Vehicle:

  • The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) is developing a Next-Gen Launch Vehicle (NGLV), which is expected to replace the current operational systems like the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV).
  • NGLV is aimed to be a cost-efficient, three-stage, reusable heavy-lift vehicle with a payload capability of 10 tonnes to Geostationary Transfer Orbit.
  • NGLV will feature semi-cryogenic propulsion for the booster stages which will be cheaper and efficient.
  • The Low Earth Orbit (LEO) payload capability will be twice that of the Geostationary Transfer Orbit i.e., 20 tonnes.
  • However, payload capability will be lower when the rocket is reusable.

Current Launch vehicles of ISRO:

About PSLV:

  • Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) is the third generation launch vehicle of India.
  • It is the first Indian launch vehicle to be equipped with liquid stages.
  • It is a four stage launch vehicle.
  • A large solid rocket motor forming the first stage,
  • An earth storable liquid stage as the second stage,
  • A high-performance solid rocket motor as third stage, and
  • A liquid stage with engines as fourth stage.
  • The vehicle successfully launched two spacecraft – Chandrayaan-1 in 2008 and Mars Orbiter Spacecraft in 2013.
  • Since 1994 till 2017, PSLV has launched 48 Indian satellites and 209 satellites for customers from abroad.

About GSLV:

  • The Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle (GSLV) project began in 1990 with the aim of acquiring an Indian launch capability for geosynchronous satellites.
  • GSLV is a fourth generation launch vehicle and is a three stage vehicle with four liquid strap-ons and the indigenously developed cryogenic Upper Stage (CUS) powers its third stage.


  • GSLV Mk III is a three-stage heavy lift launch vehicle developed by ISRO.
  • The vehicle has two solid strap-ons, a core liquid booster and a cryogenic upper stage.
  • GSLV Mk III is designed to carry 4 ton class of satellites into Geosynchronous Transfer Orbit (GTO) or about 10 tons to Low Earth Orbit (LEO), which is about twice the capability of the GSLV Mk II.
  • The first developmental flight of GSLV Mk III, the GSLV-Mk III-D1 successfully placed GSAT-19 satellite to a Geosynchronous Transfer Orbit (GTO) on June 05, 2017 from SDSC SHAR, Sriharikota.
  • GSLV MkIII-D2, the second developmental flight of GSLV MkIII successfully launched GSAT-29, a high throughput communication satellite on November 14, 2018 from Satish Dhawan Space Centre SHAR, Sriharikota.
  • GSLV MkIII-M1, successfully injected Chandrayaan-2, India’s second Lunar Mission, in to Earth Parking Orbit on July 22, 2019 from Satish Dhawan Space Centre SHAR, Sriharikota.