Reusable Launch Vehicle Mission

The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) on April 2, 2023, successfully carried out the landing experiment of the Reusable Launch Vehicle- Technology Demonstration (RLV-TD) programme at the Aeronautical Test Range in Challakere, Chitradurga, Karnataka.

  • The space agency also said that in a first in the world, a winged body has been carried to an altitude of 4.5 km by helicopter and released for carrying an autonomous landing on a runway.

What is ISRO’s RLV TD Project?

  • According to ISRO, the series of experiments with the winged RLV-TD are part of efforts at “developing essential technologies for a fully reusable launch vehicle to enable low-cost access to space”.
  • In the future, this vehicle will be scaled up to become the first stage of India’s reusable two-stage-to-orbit(TSTO) launch vehicle.
  • The RLV-TD will be used to develop technologies like hypersonic flight (HEX), autonomous landing (LEX), return flight experiment (REX), powered cruise flight, and Scramjet Propulsion Experiment (SPEX).