Why in News:
- Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) hopes to achieve the 200th successful launch of the Rohini RH-200 sounding rocket in a row.
- The 3.5-metre-tall RH-200, a trusted member of the Rohini sounding rocket family used by the ISRO for atmospheric studies.
- RH-200 is a two-stage rocket capable of climbing to a height of 70 km bearing scientific payloads.
- The first and second stages of RH-200 are powered by solid motors. The ‘200’ in the name denotes the diameter of the rocket in mm.
- For years, the RH-200 rocket had used a polyvinyl chloride (PVC)-based propellant. The first RH-200 to use a new propellant based on hydroxyl-terminated Polybutadiene (HTPB) was successfully flown in 2020.
Importance of Sounding rockets
- Sounding rockets have since been used for a variety of experiments, including those on phenomena related to eclipses
- The first sounding rocket to be launched from Thumba was the American Nike-Apache – on November 21, 1963. After that, two-stage rockets imported from Russia (M-100) and France (Centaure) were flown.
- The ISRO launched its own version – Rohini RH-75 – in 1967.
How does RH-200 still help us
- RH-200, during its flight, encounters severe environment peaks and is an ideal platform to assess new technologies, testing their airworthiness by exposing them to hostile environments.