Bangalore: The flight-test of GSLV with indigenous cryogenic engine, called off ten days ago following a leak in the second stage of the rocket, is now expected to take place only in December, Indian Space Research Organisation said yesterday.
ISRO has started the process of de-stacking the rocket and the second stage would be shifted to Liquid Propulsion Systems Centre (LPSC), a facility of the space agency located at Mahendragiri in Tamil Nadu, for an investigation into the cause of the leakage.
The launch of the GSLV-D5, scheduled for 1650 hrs on August 19 from the Sriharikota spaceport was called off, as a leak was observed in the UH25 fuel system of the liquid second stage during the pre-launch pressurisation phase on the vehicle just two hours before the scheduled lift-off.
The propellants were later drained from the cryogenic stage, liquid second stage and the four liquid Strap-ons of GSLV-D5. The rocket was moved back to the vehicle assembly building.
An ISRO official told PTI here today that the first and third stage of GSLV would be “preserved” while the second stage would have be built again, a process which has already started.
ISRO would be busy with the Mars Orbiter mission in the next two months. “We can expect the GSLV flight in December”, the official said.
ISRO has drawn flak from some quarters for using an “old tank” for the second stage as the materials used for building it were “prone for delayed cracks”. It was said have been delivered to ISRO four-years ago and was to be the last in the series of the kind that ISRO planned to use.
A senior space scientist called it a “gross error of judgement” on the part of ISRO which obviously seemed to focus more on the third (cryogenic) stage, as the first two were a “given” as it's similar to the proven PSLV, the workhorse launcher.