BENGALURU: The payload capability of India’s heaviest rocket LVM3 has been enhanced by up to 450 kg with a successful engine test, according to the Indian Space Research Organisation.
The CE20 cryogenic engine indigenously developed for LVM3 (Launch Vehicle Mark 3) was subjected to a successful hot test at an uprated thrust level of 21.8 tonnes for the first time on November 9, the country’s national space agency headquartered here said in a statement. “This will enhance the LVM3 payload capability up to 450 kg with additional propellant loading”, it said.
The major modifications carried out on this test article compared to previous engines was introduction of Thrust Control Valve (TCV) for thrust control, ISRO said. “In addition to this, 3D printed LOX and LH2 turbine exhaust casings were inducted in the engine for the first time. During this test, the engine operated with approximately 20 tonne thrust level for first 40s, then thrust level was increased to 21.8 tonne by moving the thrust control valve,” the statement said. “During the test, engine and facility performance was normal and required parameters were achieved,” it said.
LVM3, a three-stage vehicle with two solid motor strap-ons, a liquid propellant core stage and a cryogenic stage, is capable of launching a four-tonne class of satellite to Geosynchronous Transfer orbit.