The SSLV is being designed by Indian scientists to carry smaller commercial satellites into the low-earth orbit less than 2,000 km above the earth’s surface.
The SSLV can launch dedicated payloads or multiple satellites into low earth orbit or sun-synchronous orbit. The payload will be 300 kg to sun synchronous orbit (SSO) and 500 kg to low earth orbit (LEO). It was developed with the aim of launching small satellites commercially at a drastically reduced prices. The first three stages of the vehicle use solid propellant, with a fourth stage being a velocity-trimming module.
The difference between SSLV and PSLV is summarised below:
- Small Satellite Launch Vehicle (SSLV) will stand 34 m tall, 10m shorter than the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV).
- SSLV is also a ‘thinner’ launch vehicle, possessing a diameter of just 2 metres.
- Unlike PSLV (Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle) and GSLV(Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle), the launch readiness period of SSLV is expected to be less than a week instead of months.
- The SSLV can be assembled both vertically and horizontally whereas the PSLV and GSLVs are assembled vertically.
- The manufacturing cost of SSLV is expected to be 10% of that of PSLV and it will have a higher launch rate as compared to PSLV.