ISRO Looks to Privatize PSLV Operations, Boost Launch Rate

PSLV rocket lifts off with India's Mars Orbiter Mission. (Credit: ISRO)
PSLV rocket lifts off with India’s Mars Orbiter Mission. (Credit: ISRO)

ISRO Chairman AS Kiran Kumar said the Indian space agency is looking to turn over operations of its Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) to a private consortium under the supervision of its commercial arm, Antrix Corporation.

“This will be discussed with industry leaders at the Make In India week. Tentatively, we plan to implement it in 2020,” he said.

Over the next five years, ISRO is also looking to roughly double its annual launch rate to 12.

In addition to the PSLV, ISRO also flies the larger GSLV Mark II launch vehicle. The space agency also is developing a more powerful GSLV Mark III booster.