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ISRO to attempt 200th consecutively successful launch of RH-200 sounding rocket

Published: 25th Nov, 2022


The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) is going to attempt the 200th consecutively successful launch of the Rohini RH-200 sounding rocket.

RH-200 sounding rocket:

  • RH-200 is a two-stage rocket capable of climbing to a height of 70 km bearing scientific payloads.
  • The first and second stages of RH-200 are powered by solid motors.
  • For years, the RH-200 rocket had used a polyvinyl chloride (PVC)-based propellant.
  • The first RH-200 to use a new propellant based on hydroxyl-terminated Polybutadiene (HTPB) was successfully flown from the TERLS in September 2020.
  • As compared to PVC-based propellants, HTPB-based propellant is more energetic, has higher mechanical & interface properties, and has fewer defects due to lower processing temperature.
  • The ‘200’ in the name denotes the diameter of the rocket in mm. Other operational Rohini variants are RH-300 Mk-II and RH-560 Mk-III.

What are sounding Rockets?

  • Sounding rockets are one or two-stage solid propellant rockets used for probing the upper atmospheric regions and for space research.
  • Sounding rockets take their name from the nautical term "to sound," which means to take measurements.
  • They also serve as easily affordable platforms to test or prove prototypes of new components or subsystems intended for use in launch vehicles and satellites.
  • The first sounding rocket to be launched from Thumba was the American Nike-Apache - on November 21, 1963.
  • After that, two-stage rockets imported from Russia (M-100) and France (Centaure) were flown.
  • The ISRO launched its own version - Rohini RH-75 - in 1967.

Rohini (Rocket family):

  • Rohini is a series of sounding rockets developed by the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) for meteorological and atmospheric study.
  • These sounding rockets are capable of carrying payloads of 2 to 200 kilograms between altitudes of 100 to 500 kms.

Operational sounding Rockets:

  • Currently, three versions are offered as operational sounding rockets, which cover a payload range of 8-100 Kg and an apogee range of 80-475 km.

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