Land acquisition process for ISRO’s second launchpad starts in Tamil Nadu
The process of land acquisition for Indian Space Research Organisation’s (ISRO) second launchpad has started in Kulasekarapattinam, a town in the Thoothukudi (Tuticorin) district of Tamil Nadu.
Confirming the report Tuticorin District Collector Sandeep Nanduri said, “The process for acquiring land for the rocket launching pad has begun. The land requirement will be about 2,300 acres. The project activity is expected to begin in six months.”
ISRO chairman K Sivan too confirmed said that the land acquisition process has started in Tuticorin for the second spaceport. The spaceport will primarily cater to launches of newly developed Small Satellite Launch Vehicle (SSLV or mini-PSLV). The initial launches (around two) of the SSLV will be from Sriharikota but once the second spaceport is ready, subsequent SSLV launches will be shifted there.
He also confirmed that the first launch of SSLV with a ‘payload-lifting capability of around 500kg is due in the first quarter of 2020’.
Earlier on Thursday, the Union Minister of State for Atomic Energy and Space, Jitendra Singh said in Rajya Sabha that the government has a proposal to set up a rocket launching pad near Kulasekarapattinam in Tamil Nadu.
Currently, India’s first and only spaceport, the Satish Dhawan Space Centre (SDSC), is in Sriharikota, 100 km north of Chennai, in Andhra Pradesh.