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Sounding rocket developed

Special Correspondent

VIT students in collaboration with ISRO

VELLORE: The students of VIT University, Vellore, have developed Rohini-200 (RH200), a sounding rocket, in collaboration with the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO).

The sounding rocket – an instrument-carrying rocket designed to take measurements and perform experiments during its sub-orbital flight--will be launched from the Thumba Equatorial Rocket Launching Station (TERLS), Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre (VSSC), Thiruvananthapuram on July 7. “This will be the first sounding rocket in India that carries a payload developed solely by students”, says a VIT press release. Ramakrishnan, former Director (Projects), VSSC mooted this idea, and a team headed by mechanical engineering students Dev Sharma and Sunayan Kumar, and comprising Manish Kumar Narnoli and Gautam Alok (Mechanical Engineering), Himanshu Misra (Electrical and Electronics Engineering), Chandresh Mittal (EEE), Ankit Sharma (Electronics and Instrumentation Engineering), and Nitesh Kumar (Electronics and Communication Engineering) and their mentor Geetha Manivasagam, Professor of Mechanical Engineering developed the rocket.

VIT University has fully funded the project, and also plans for the second phase in future, which will include fabrication of the entire rocket with advanced payloads.

The team fabricated the payload and other components for the sounding rocket, which was continuously reviewed by B.V.A. Rao, Advisor to the Chancellor of VIT University, T. Rao, Director, Academic Research, VIT, Rashmi Ranjan Das of VIT, Panciker, Scientist, VSSC and Ratnakar Rao, Project Director (Sounding Rocket, VSSC).

The team has designed the payload with a 3-axis accelerometer with signal conditioned voltage outputs with the capaibility of measuring dynamic acceleration from motion, shock, or vibration. The payload was mostly designed and tested at VSSC facility under the supervision of experts. This measurement will enhance the performance of the rocket in future.

Further, this rocket also carries a new technology as a super capacitor, which is used instead of battery to fire the second stage of the rocket without any reduction in the voltage.

The team was also responsible for designing a mechanical isolation system with bus arrangement of the payload. This project gave the students an opportunity to work on a realtime project.

The first indigenously designed and built sounding rocket, RH-75, made its maiden flight on November 20, 1967.

The launch of the sounding rocket developed by VIT students would be the 52nd launch of a sounding rocket from TERLS, a release said.

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