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Indian Space Research Organisation

The Indian Space Research Organisation is the agency of India that deals with space exploration and astronomy. Also known as ISRO, the organisation has mad many successes since its creation in 1969. It built and launched the Mars Orbiter Mission which made India the first country to get to Mars on its first try.

Indian Space Research Organisation
Indian Space Research Organisation Logo.svg
Agency overview
Formed15 August 1969; 50 years ago (1969-08-15)
Preceding agency
JurisdictionDepartment of Space, Government of India
HeadquartersBengaluru, Karnataka, India
12°57′56″N 77°41′53″E / 12.96556°N 77.69806°E / 12.96556; 77.69806Coordinates: 12°57′56″N 77°41′53″E / 12.96556°N 77.69806°E / 12.96556; 77.69806
Employees16,072 as of 2018[2]
Annual budgetINR11538.26 crore (US$2.0 billion)(2019–20 est.)[3]
Agency executive



Organised research about space in India was led by two scientists: Vikram Sarabhai and Homi Bhaba.[7][8] Bhaba was the secretary of the Department of Atomic Energy when it was founded in 1950. He supported Sarabhai in creating India's first rocket launch station.[7] In 1962, the Indian National Committee for Space Research was set up by India's first prime minister, Jawaharlal Nehru.[9] In 1969, ISRO was created to follow INCOSPAR.

Space flight programsEdit

Like other space programs, ISRO has had many successes and failures. In the beginning, ISRO built satellites that were then launched by other countries, like the Soviet Union. Later, ISRO built many types of rockets. Some of those rockets are now decommissioned, meaning ISRO does not use them anymore. In the future, India also wants to send people to space and send more missions to other planets.

Comparing Indian carrier rockets. Left to right: SLV, ASLV, PSLV, GSLV, and GSLV III.

Launch vehiclesEdit

During the 1960s and 1970s India began its own rocket program. ISRO has had five different types of rockets.

The Satellite Launch Vehicle was a 4-stage solid-propellant light launcher. It was supposed to be 500 kilometres (310 miles) tall and be able to carry 40 kilograms (88 pounds). The first launch was in 1979 and launched every year until 1983. It launched successfully for the first time on July 18, 1980.[10] This means that India is the sixth country to get spaceflight by itself. It is now decomissioned.

The Augmented Satellite Launch Vehicle was a five-stage solid propellant rocket. It was able to carry 150 kilograms (330 pounds) into low Earth orbit. The design was based on the SLV and the project started in the 1980s. The rocket was tested in 1987, 1988, 1992, and 1994 and only two of them were successful. It is now decommissioned.

The Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle uses an expendable launch system to carry things into space. It is still in use.

The Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle also uses an expendable launch system, this time to launch INSAT-type satellites. Currently it is India's second-heaviest launch vehicle and can launch up to 5,000 kilograms (11,000 pounds) into low Earth orbit. There are multiple marks, or versions of this rocket. It is still in use.


India's first satellite, which was called the Aryabhata, was launched by the Soviet Union. Since then India has built and launched many different satellites.

Rohini seriesEdit

Rohini is a series of four satellites. These satellites were launched by the Satellite Launch Vehicle, and three of them were able to make it into orbit.[11]

INSAT seriesEdit

The Indian National Satellite System (INSAT) is a series of satellites built and launched by ISRO. These help India with telecommunications, broadcasting, meteorology, and search-and-rescue.

IRS seriesEdit

The Indian Remote Sensing satellites (IRS) are a series of satellites built and launched by ISRO. It is the largest series of remote sensing satellites for regular people in the world.

Radar Imagine SatellitesEdit

India has two Radar Imaging Satellites (RISAT).

South Asia SatelliteEdit

The South Asia Satellite is a communications satellite launched in 2017 as a gift to the other countries in the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation.

GPS-aided geo-augmented navigation satellite systemEdit

Also known as GAGAN, this is a national plan for satellite navigation.

IRNSS satellite navigation systemEdit

The Independent Regional Navigation Satellite System is made to have accurate position information to people in India as well as 1500 km from its borders. It is made like this because in bad situations, people cannot rely on GPS. ISRO first planned to launch the satellites between 2012 and 2014, but it had to be moved to later years.

Human spaceflightEdit

The first Indian cosmonaut is Rakesh Sharma, who flew with two Russians in Salyut 7 in 1984.[10] The first female Indian astronaut was Kalpana Chawla. She died in Space Shuttle Columbia in 2003. The second female Indian astronaut, Sunita Williams, spent 321 days 17 hours 15 minutes in space.

Exploring other planetsEdit

In 2008 ISRO sent Chandrayaan-1 to the moon.[10] It helped discover evidence of water on the moon. ISRO flew the Mars Orbiter Mission in 2013 and it reached Mars in 2014, making India the 4th country to put a spacecraft in orbit around Mars.


Chandrayaan-2 will be India's second moon mission. Chandrayaan-2 is scheduled to launch in July 2019, using the "Bahubali" GSLV Mk. III. It will include an orbiter, lander, and rover that will study the moon both on and above the surface. The mission will spend some time orbiting Earth before going to the moon. If all follows the plan, the lander will reach the Moon's surface on September 6th.[12] Other than Chandrayaan-2, ISRO may team up with the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, or JAXA, for a mission looking for water on the Moon.

The next Mars mission will be the Mars Orbiter Mission 2, and will be launched in 2022 or 2023.

The first mission to the Sun will be a probe called Aditya-L1. It was originally planned for 2012, but was delayed to 2021. It will study solar wind and space weather.

The first mission to Venus will be an orbiter mission called Shukrayaan-1, that may launch in 2023.

In 2018, prime minister Narendra Modi said that India will send astronauts into space by 2022.[13]


  1. Spaceflight, Adam Mann 2019-03-01T22:51:45Z. "ISRO: The Indian Space Research Organization". Retrieved 2019-06-19.
  2. "Annual Report 2017-18". Retrieved 23 February 2019.
  4. "Chairman ISRO, Secretary DOS". Department of Space, Government of India. Retrieved January 23, 2018.
  5. "ISRO gets new identity". Indian Space Research Organisation. Retrieved 19 August 2018.
  6. "A 'vibrant' new logo for ISRO". Times of India. 19 August 2002. Retrieved 19 August 2018.
  7. 7.0 7.1 "Dr. Vikram Ambalal Sarabhai (1963-1971) - ISRO". Retrieved 2019-06-18.
  8. "Homi J. Bhabha". Atomic Heritage Foundation. Retrieved 2019-06-18.
  9. Pushpa M. Bhargava; Chandana Chakrabarti (2003). The Saga of Indian Science Since Independence: In a Nutshell. Universities Press. pp. 39–. ISBN 978-81-7371-435-1.
  10. 10.0 10.1 10.2 Spaceflight, Adam Mann 2019-03-01T22:51:45Z. "ISRO: The Indian Space Research Organization". Retrieved 2019-06-19.
  11. "Rohini Satellite RS-1 - ISRO". Retrieved 2019-06-30.
  12. Science, Tariq Malik 2019-06-15T14:47:38Z; Astronomy. "India Will Launch an Ambitious Moon Orbiter-Lander-Rover Combo in July". Retrieved 2019-06-30.
  13. "Gaganyaan mission to take Indian astronaut to space by 2022: PM Modi". The Hindu. PTI. 2018-08-15. ISSN 0971-751X. Retrieved 2019-06-30.CS1 maint: others (link)