India's GSLV-Mk III to take off today; Final countdown for GSAT-29 launch has started


India's heaviest rocket Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle, commonly called GSLV-Mk III, which will be carrying communication satellite GSAT-29, is set to be launched from the rocket port in Sriharikota on Wednesday evening.

The Indian space agency Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) stated that the GSLV-Mk III standing 43.4 meters tall and weighing 640 ton is expected to blast off at 5.08 pm local time, 7.38 pm SGT on Wednesday. The final countdown for the rocket launch began at 2.50 pm on Tuesday, November 13.

As per the space agency, this rocket carrying 3,423 kg GSAT-29 will sling it into the Geo Stationary Orbit or GTO just over 16 minutes into its flight and then will be lifted to the final GTO at a height of 36,000 km from the earth's surface.

GSLV-Mk III is also designated for ISRO's second moon mission Chandrayaan 2 that is scheduled for next year.

It took almost 10 years to design the GSAT-29 satellite, which carries Ka/Ku-band high throughput communication transponders that intended to meet the communication requirements of users including those in remote areas of India. The space agency stated that it will provide communication services to the Northeast region and Jammu and Kashmir to facilitate execution of Digital India initiatives.

ISRO stated that several new technologies such as Q/V-band payload, data transmission through optical communication link will be demonstrated that will help in realising future advanced satellites.