An optimized version of solid motor for third stage of PSLV was successfully ground tested yesterday (March 30, 2002) at ISRO’s SHAR Centre, Sriharikota. The performance parameters of the motor during the test were normal.

The major improvements in the 2-meter diameter composite third stage motor include optimization of motor case and nozzle and increased propellant loading. With the present test, the motor with the improvement has been successfully evaluated consecutively in two ground tests.

During the firing of the motor, about 270 parameters like pressure, strain, temperature, displacement, vibration etc., were monitored and recorded. The motor has a nominal burn time of 112 seconds and a maximum sea level thrust of 19 tonnes.

Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre, Thiruvananthapuram, the lead centre for the launch vehicle systems is responsible for the design and development of high performance solid motor, and SHAR Centre is responsible for activities related to propellant casting, motor assembly and static testing.

This high performance motor is planned to be used in the next PSLV flight (PSLV-C4) for Geo-Synchronous Transfer Orbit (GTO) mission and is expected to increase the payload capability of PSLV in this orbit by about 70 kg.