10 facts about ISRO

September 21, 2018 1 By HimaBindu P S

1.The first rocket in India was transported on a cycle

India's first Sounding rocket

India’s first Sounding rocket

The first rocket was so light and small that it was transported on a bicycle to the Thumba Launching Station in Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala.

In 1963 Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) launched its first rocket from Thumba Equatorial Launching Station,the rocket was transported to lift-off pad ON A BICYCLE.

2.VSSC Space Centre, from where, Indians watched their first rocket head for space, was originally a Catholic church

St Mary Magdalene Church VSCC Vikram sarabhai Space centre

Vikram Sarabhai Space centre

A local Catholic Church the St Mary Magadelene’s Church served as the main office for the scientists. The bishop’s house was converted into a workshop. A Cattle shed became the laboratory in which young Indian scientists like Abdul Kalam Azad worked.

3.1981’s APPLE satellite was transported on a Bullock cart

Indian First Communication Satellite – APPLE

Indian First Communication Satellite – APPLE

The second rocket, which was launched on 1981, was a little bigger and heavier and it was transported in a bullock cart.

4.Aryabhata satellite was first satellite that was built by our own;without buying stuff from the other

India's first indigenous satellite- Aryabhatta

India’s first indigenous satellite- Aryabhata

When Indian scientists asked for the methodologies and engineering assistance from US for our Mars mission long back, they refused. They tried hard and developed new methodology and engineering indigenously and made this historical achievement with much cheaper cost.

5.India’s first experimental satellite vehicle SLV-3 and director of this project was A.P.J. Abdul Kalam


The vehicle was launched by Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) on July 18, 1980. Former President A P J Abdul Kalam was the Project Director of SLV-3. The SLV-3 weighed 17 tonne and had a payload of 40 kg. The SLV-3 put 35 kg Rohini Satellite into the orbit.

6.ISRO’s expenditure in the last 40 years = Half of NASA’s single year budget

satellite expenditure data

You can actually buy satellite data

India’s mars mission costed about 69 million dollars and took about 18 months of preparation compared to 5 years and about 670 million dollars took by NASA for their mars mission.
On similar lines India’s mission to moon took about 59 million dollars which is about 10% of NASA’s budget for its similar mission to moon.the total annual budget for (NASA → 1218.34 billion) & (ISRO → 90.94 billion).

7.INDIA (ISRO) is the only one country who has reached to the MARS in his FIRST attempt

mars_mission_mangalyan (MOM) success in first attempt

NASA failed in their first 5 attempts. Soviet Union failed in their first 8 attempts. China & Russia also failed in their first attempt.

 8.ANTRIX is the corporate arm of ISRO

Ratan tata Antrix


Antrix deals with the commercialization of space products, consultancy and technology transfer developed by the ISRO. It has clientele worldwide – Europe, Middle East and SE Asia.Apart from bigwigs from ISRO and other related space bodies, two of India’s biggest industrialists – Ratan Tata and Jamshyd Godrej – are on the board.

9.Manned missions can happen soon!

Indias Manned Mission to Space

Indias Manned Mission to Space

The first crewed flight is planned with a spacecraft called Gaganyann for December 2021 on a home-grown GSLV-III rocket.

Previously, human spaceflight was not the priority for ISRO, though most of the capability for the same had been realised. ISRO has already developed most of the technologies for crewed flight and in 2018 it performed a Crew Module Atmospheric Re-entry Experiment and a Pad Abort Test for the mission.The project will cost less than Rs. 10,000 crore.

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