Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), New Space India Limited (NSIL) and various private entities have lined up about 30 satellite launches from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre, Sriharikota, during the last quarter of 2023-24 and the next financial year 2024-25.
The key commercial launches include the planned Sub-Orbital and Orbital launches by Agnikul Cosmos and Skyroot Aerospace.
While half of these scheduled launches cater to the commercial space sector, the rest are user-funded scientific missions or technology test launches. Of the 14 commercial missions identified, 7 launches are being undertaken by NSIL, the public sector entity responsible for producing, assembling and integrating the launch vehicle with the help of an industry consortium. The details of the forthcoming launches were finalised in the integrated launch manifesto prepared by the Indian National Space Promotion and Authorisation Centre (IN-SPACe), the autonomous nodal agency under the Department of Space.
The launch manifesto comprehensively covers user-funded, scientific missions & other technology demonstration launches by ISRO along with the commercial launches and associated primary and co-sharing passengers.
This initiative aligns with the directives of the recently ratified Indian Space Policy, entrusting IN-SPACe with the authorisation of a launch manifesto for launch infrastructure created through public expenditure.
The integrated launch manifesto is in line with the Department of Space’s vision of optimising resources and encouraging innovation to establish India as a global manufacturing hub for space activities, aligning with the vision of 'Aatmnirbhar Bharat' (Self-Reliant India).
The scientific partners for these satellite launch programmes include Digantara Research & Technology, Dhruva Space, Space Kidz India and academic institutes like IIT-Madras, Manipal Institute of Technology and C.V. Raman Global University Odisha.
The IN-SPACe was formed on 24 June 2020 to promote, enable, authorise and supervise non-government entities (NGE) to undertake space activities. These activities include manufacturing launch vehicles and satellites, providing space-based services, establishing a ground station, sharing space infrastructure & facilities; and establishing new facilities under the Department of Space. IN-SPACe is currently functioning with three directorates viz., Promotion Directorate (PD), Technical Directorate (TD) and Program Management and Authorisation Directorate (PMAD) and Legal, Finance and Administration Wing with its headquarters at Ahmedabad.