Reusable launch vehicle puts India in `G4`

Russia, US and China other countries with capability.

The successful recovery of the Space Capsule Recovery Experiment (SRE-1) satellite has brought India closer to a select group of nations that have the capability to bring an orbiting spacecraft back to earth.

At present, Russia, USA and China have this capability. This will also help India develop a reusable launch vehicle (RLV) for future space launches, although this is still at a nascent stage.

According to sources from the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), a reusable launch vehicle will be vital because India is planning a manned mission to space by 2020, after the unmanned mission to moon (Chandrayaan) by early 2008.

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