In a first of its kind, India successfully placed three satellites into orbit on a rocket completely developed by a four year- old startup, marking the entry of the private sector into space activities, currently dominated by the state-run behemoth ISRO. Skyroot Aerospace-designed Vikram-S, named in a befitting tribute to the father of the country's space programme Vikram Sarabhai, tasted success in its maiden mission. Skyroot Aerospace become the first privately held company in India after the space sector was opened for private players by the Centre in 2020.
"We are happy to announce the successful completion of Mission Prarambh, The Beginning, by Skyroot aerospace," a smiling Pawan Goenka, Chairman of the country's space regulator, Indian National Space Promotion and Authorisation Centre (INSPACe), said from ISRO's Mission Control Center here.
The rocket achieved an altitude of 89.5 km and a range of 121.2 km, "exactly what was planned by Skyroot Aerospace," he said. The rocket "worked as planned" and Skyroot Aerospace has demonstrated various capabilities of sub-systems that will go into the orbital launch vehicle, he added.
This mission is considered to be a significant milestone for Skyroot Aerospace as it would help test and validate the majority of the technologies in the Vikram series of orbital class space launch vehicles, including many sub-systems and technologies that would be tested before lift-off and post-lift-off phases of the launch.