The Indian Space Research Organisation (Isro) on Wednesday successfully fired a sounding rocket sporting India’s first payload developed entirely by students. Engineering students at Vellore Institute of Technology (VIT) had put together one of the payloads on the Rohini-200 (RH-200) series rocket.
The Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre (VSSC) fired the RH-200 from Thumba Equatorial Rocket Launching Station (TERLS) near Thiruvananthapuram at 3.00 pm on Wednesday.
A sounding rocket is a research vehicle and does not put a satellite into orbit. Its chief function is to take measurements and do atmospheric experiments during its short, sub-orbital flight.
“It is the fifty second sounding rocket from TERLS. It was mostly designed and tested at the VSSC facility, but developed by students,” Ratnakar Rao, Project Director (Sounding Rocket, VSSC) told FE.
The student team also developed a 3-axis accelerometer with signal conditioned voltage outputs with the capability of measuring dynamic acceleration from motion, shock, or vibration. Another novelty is a super-capacitor instead of the battery, which helps the transition to the second stage of the rocket without voltage reduction. The team of students mentored by VIT professor Geetha Manivasagam, fabricated the payload and other components for the sounding rocket.
Funded by VIT university, engineering students, Dev Sharma, Sunayan Kumar, Himanshu Misra, Chandresh Mittal, Ankit Sharma, Manish Kumar Narnoli, Nitesh Kumar and Gautam Alok developed the payload.