When India fires the high thrust cryogenic engine CE-20 to launch GSLV Mk III in its first experimental flight from Sriharikota on Monday, it will propel ISRO's biggest dream albeit about 13 years later than it was originally planned. ISRO would have used the CE-20 powered GSLV Mk III in 2003 if not for the US sanction and a foisted case. The launch, a culmination of a long and arduous journey spanning more than three decades, will set the ball rolling for ISRO's future projects including Chandrayaan-2 and the manned mission.
It will also be a first step towards setting its foot in the global heavy payload market. "If there was no sanction, we would have operationalised GSLV Mk-II in 1999. By 2003-2004, we would have launched what we would be witnessing on Monday ," said former ISRO scientist Nambi Narayanan, who was the project director for the development of cryogenic engine in the early 1990s.
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