The quality control problems that have plagued India’s GSLV launch vehicle re-emerged on Monday as ISRO was forced to scrub a crucial launch after a fuel leak was discovered. ISRO Chairman K Radhakrishnan made the announcement:
“Leaky proponents observed in the second stage. We need to make an assessment of the cause of the leak in GSLV-D5 vehicle,” the ISRO chief said.
“We will announce a new date for the launch of GSLV- D5 satellite,”” he added, suggesting that getting the GLSV-D5 back on steam will take time.
The launch, which will place a communications satellite in orbit, is a major test of the nation’s domestically produced cryogenic third stage. The inaugural launch of the engine failed on April 15, 2010.
This would have been the first GSLV launch in nearly three years. The rocket put a satellite into the Bay of Bengal after going out of control on Christmas Day 2010.
The GSLV has been plagued by problems over the years. with two successes, one partial success and four failures since 2001.