The initial projects of ISRO formed the back bone of the organization and are still well remembered. A quick recap of what the ISRO was able to achieve over the years in the form of launch vehicles and satellites are:
1. The Satellite Launch Vehicle (SLV) was created to launch multiple rockets and could reach a height of 500 km with a payload of 40 kgs. It was released in 1979 and the project was decommissioned in 1983.
2. The INSAT series were launched by the ISRO to reduce dependence on foreign satellites and to increase local telecommunication, broadcasting and search and rescue needs.
3. The Augmented Satellite Launch Vehicle (ASLV) was started in the year 1987.
4. The IRS series of satellites was ideal for remote sensing and was expressly created for dealing with civilian use of remote sensing.
5. The Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) is still in use to launch satellites into space.
6. The Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle (GSLV) is used to launch India’s geosynchronous satellites into space for geostationary orbits. At present, this is one of the ISRO’s heaviest satellite launch vehicle and probably the favorite too. It has a payload mass rof about 2500 kg capacity.
7. The GSAT series of satellites, the KALPANA-1 were all launched with the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle.
8. The Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle Mark-III (GSLV III) is now under active research and development to help get heavy satellites into space and geostationary orbits. Its first flight is scheduled to be launched in 2010 and has a lift capacity of about 5000Kg.