Vikram-S: Meet the team behind the successful launch of India’s first private rocket | India News

BENGALURU: In a milestone, Hyderabad-based startup Skyroot Aerospace on Friday became the first Indian company to launch a rocket – the Vikram-S, a small single-stage launch vehicle – from a sonic missile complex at isro‘s spaceport Sriharikota.
The rocket has reached its maximum altitude, Apogee (point away from Earth) of 89.5 km above the target 80+ km. While other findings from the mission will come gradually, the company declared the mission a success and said “all parameters” were met.
The company is elated after the success, but their employees will soon begin work on the next phase of development activities that will put their first rocket, the Vikram-I, on the launch pad. TOI looks at the journey of Skyroot, its founders, other key members and more:
Company to date: Formally founded on June 12, 2018 by Pawan Chandana and Naga Bharat Daka, both former Isro scientists, the company has reported steady growth for 29 years. past month.
But the mulberry is important:

  • June 12, 2020: Skyroot Aerospace is established
  • August 2020: Became India’s first pvt company to run large scale liquid propulsion test
  • September 2020: Development of India’s first privately built 3D printed cryo engine
  • December 2020: First Indian company develops and test-fires solid rocket stage
  • July 2021: Series-A capital increase
  • September 2021: First Indian company signs a Memorandum of Understanding with Isro on its facilities & expertise
  • November 2021: First Indian company to test 3D printed cryo engine
  • January 2022: Raised an additional $4.5 million
  • May 2022: Completed full-stage test firing of Vikram-1 . missile
  • November 18, 2022: First Indian company launches rocket

Pawan Kumar Chandana, IIT-Kharagpur alumnus, holds a Bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering and a Master’s degree in thermal science and engineering.
Prior to Skyroot, he worked with Isro’s flagship rocket facility, Vikram Sarabhai Space Center (VSSC) for six years. Among the projects he is involved in is the GSLV-Mk3 (LVM3), the largest rocket built by Isro to date.
Naga Bharat Daka, an IIT-Madras alumnus, holds a Bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering and a Master’s degree in microelectronics and VLS design.
He also worked at VSSC before co-founding Skyroot with Chandana. At VSSC, he worked as a flight computer engineer, helping to build hardware and firmware for many of the onboard computer modules that performed the aircraft’s sequencing, navigation, control and guidance functions. launch facility.
Other key members:
Gnanagandhi V, the company’s head of liquid and cryogenic propulsion development is a Padma Shri awardee with over 40 years of experience in the propulsion industry. A former Isro scientist, he is considered one of the pioneers of cryogenic rocket technology in India.
Eswaran VG, a solid propulsion specialist, served as project manager of the world’s third largest solid-fuel rocket stage (on GSLV-Mk3 or LVM3).
Selvaraju S, who works on system quality and reliability, has expertise in quality assurance performed for over 50 launches. He is the former director of the General Directorate of System Reliability & Quality at Isro headquarters.
What is next?
The company will now focus on further tests of the various systems going into the Vikram-I, the first of three official rockets the company plans to build and launch.
The company plans to do more launch missions in the coming years, and according to its internal goals, it hopes to do 18 launches by 2026 and earn more than $100 million in revenue. Growth through 2026 will be gradual with four launches targeted next year, eight by 2024 and 12 by 2025.


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