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India’s Agnikul Cosmos to Conduct Maiden Test Flight of Agnibaan Rocket

In a ground-breaking event slated for this Friday, Agnikul Cosmos, an emergent Indian private space start-up, will conduct the inaugural test flight of its Agnibaan SOrTeD (Suborbital Tech Demonstrator) rocket. This initiative marks a significant milestone in India’s burgeoning space sector, demonstrating innovations that challenge even those technologies ISRO is still mastering.


Founded in 2017 by visionary aerospace engineers and incubated at the Indian Institute of Technology-Madras, Agnikul Cosmos aims to revolutionize space technology. The Agnibaan rocket, weighing 580 kilograms, will be launched from Sriharikota, aiming to reach an altitude of 20 kilometers above Earth before descending into the Bay of Bengal, carrying payloads weighing up to 7 kilograms.

The test flight of Agnibaan SOrTeD is noteworthy for its use of a semi-cryogenic engine, a first for an Indian private company. This engine, named Agnilet, is 3D printed in a single piece and operates using a mix of aviation turbine fuel and medical grade liquid oxygen, a combination that promises cost efficiency and ease of sourcing.

The innovation doesn’t stop there. Agnikul Cosmos has constructed a unique launch pad named Dhanush at Sriharikota, showcasing the company’s ability to undertake controlled rocket flights with the added security of ISRO’s self-destruct mechanism in case of any anomalies.

This launch is not just a testament to Agnikul Cosmos’s technical prowess but also highlights the significant strides India is making in the private space sector. The company has already secured an impressive $40 million in investment and has a vibrant team with an average age of 23, eager to push the boundaries of space technology.

Agnikul’s ambition is clear – to make India a global hub for small satellite launches. With plans to deploy satellites weighing 30 to 300 kilograms into low earth orbits, the company’s approach to using transportable and customizable launch vehicles like Agnibaan, powered by their innovative 3D-printed engine, sets a new precedent in space technology.

As the country watches this historic launch, Agnikul Cosmos not only hopes to pave the way for frequent and on-demand satellite deployments but also to inspire a new generation of space enthusiasts and engineers. This launch represents not just a milestone for Agnikul Cosmos but a leap forward for India’s space industry at large.

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