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Launchers or Launch Vehicles are used to carry spacecraft to space. India has two
operational launchers: Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) and Geosynchronous
Satellite Launch Vehicle (GSLV). GSLV with indigenous Cryogenic Upper Stage has
enabled the launching up to 2 tonne class of communication satellites. The next
variant of GSLV is GSLV Mk III, with indigenous high thrust cryogenic engine and
stage, having the capability of launching 4 tonne class of communication satellites.
In order to achieve high accuracy in placing satellites into their orbits, a
combination of accuracy, efficiency, power and immaculate planning are required.
ISRO's Launch Vehicle Programme spans numerous centres and employs over 5,000
people. Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre, located in Thiruvananthapuram, is responsible
for the design and development of launch vehicles. Liquid Propulsion Systems Centre
and ISRO Propulsion Complex, located at Valiamala and Mahendragiri respectively,
develop the liquid and cryogenic stages for these launch vehicles. Satish Dhawan
Space Centre, SHAR, is the space port of India and is responsible for integration of
launchers. It houses two operational launch pads from where all GSLV and PSLV
flights take place.