BANGALORE - A team that analyzed data from the failed launch of India's Geostationary Satellite Launch Vehicle (GSLV) has found the primary cause of the Dec. 25 mishap was the "untimely and inadvertent snapping" of a group of 10 connectors located at the bottom of the rocket's Russian supplied upper stage.
The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) said in a Dec. 31 statement that the vehicle's performance was normal up to 47.5 seconds after liftoff. It then began to stray from its planned orientation angle, which resulted in higher structural loads than the vehicle was designed to handle.
The rocket, which was carrying a telecommunications satellite, began to break apart about 58 seconds into the flight and was destroyed by command at 64 seconds. [8 Biggest Space Misfires of 2010]