The Thumba Equatorial Rocket Launch Station (TERLS)
which is operated by ISRO. The station is located 16km from Thiruvananthapuram, at the outskirts of Kerala. I
t is considered as one the best stations as it is closest to the equator, and magnetic field helps in the conduction of the space related experiments. Thumba is equipped with latest technologies and three launching pads which was an exception till date.
Thumba Equatorial Rocket launch station was mainly established for the purpose of conducting experiments that would provide advanced knowledge in the field of
agriculture, telecommunication, and weather forecasting as well as other usage infrared in advanced technology. The campus is huge and spread in 122 hectares, huge laboratories; several control rooms, workshops and three launching pads. Thumba was the first rocket launching center of India.
Thumba Equatorial Rocket Launching Station includes some ground infrastructures like a telemeter receiving station which records data collected from the rockets during flight; test stands for testing solid and liquid propellants; components
and payloads which are required to administer vibration tests; and amenities to provide best suitable condition s for launching which includes wide space of land.
Thumba Equatorial Rocket Launching Station provides number facilities which include infrastructural provisions for propellant testing, rocket designing, rocket motor casting, integration, payload assembly, testing as well as evaluation which can serve for launching sounding rockets from its launch pads. TERLS largely focuses on testing and building of rockets with an elaborate workshop which also launches the rockets as well.
Major Rockets launched in Thumba Equatorial Rocket Launching Station
Thumba was initially used to launch rockets made by UK, USA, and USSR among which French Centura, British Skua and American Nike Apache are some of the prominent ones. Among the Indian Satellites and rockets the Rohini Family was the first one which was launched successfully from this space centre. Along with this Thumba has been popularly known for its Rocket propellant plants (RPP) which received its sanction in December 1969 after successfully launching Indian Centura.
Thus, Thumba Equatorial Rocket Launching Station (TERLS) is one of the pioneers in the field of space technology in India. This marked the beginning of modern day space technology in India. While Thumba has been primarily marked for its workshop, Sriharikota after its establishment is marked for launching of rockets till present.