DATE=11/24/1999 TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT TITLE=INDIA SPACE LAUNCH NUMBER=2-256498 BYLINE=ANJANA PASRICHA DATELINE=NEW DELHI CONTENT= VOICED AT: INTRO: Next month, Indian scientists will test-fire a cryogenic engine that will help the nation launch its own satellites into space. From New Delhi, Anjana Pasricha reports, the project is being described as a milestone for India's space program, and is expected to give a boost to the country's efforts to step into the international space launch market. Text: The powerful cryogenic engine can carry communication satellites of up to two-thousand,500 kilograms into space. So far India launches its bigger satellites from France, because India's capabilities are limited to sending smaller satellites into a lower orbit. The spokesman for India's Space Organization, G. Krishnamurthy, explains the cryogenic engines will enhance India's satellite launching capabilities. ///Insert Krishanmurthy act/// It will give us the capability to launch INSAT (the name of a series of Indian communication satellites) class of two-thousand to two-thousand,500 kg satellites into geo-stationary transfer orbit. Right now our capability is limited to polar satellite launch vehicles where we are able to put one-thousand kg. into nearer orbits of about 800 to one-thousand kilometers. ///end Krishnamurthy act/// So far only an exclusive club consisting of the United States, Russia, France, China and Japan possess the cryogenic engine technology. India began developing the technology in 1992 - soon after Russia scrapped an agreement to supply the cryogenic know-how to India's space agency. India had then accused Moscow of acting under pressure from the United States, which asked Russia to halt the technology transfer because it could also be used in New Delhi's nuclear program. Project director, Gnanagandhi (uses only one name) explains, after the cryogenic engine is test-fired next month, India will belong to the elite club of nations who have the capability to launch heavier satellites into upper space. ///Insert Gnanagandhi act/// It is a very big milestone, because cryo technology today, in the world only five people (nations) are having. We are going to be the sixth nation, handling liquid hydrogen and liquid oxygen in rocketry. ///End Gnanagandhi act/// For decades, India's space program has focused on providing services such as telecommunications and weather forecasting. But earlier this year India launched three small foreign commercial satellites into space, becoming the first developing country to enter the lucrative global commercial space launch market. The cryogenic engine technology will enable the country to tap a wider satellite launch market. (signed) NEB/AP/PLM 24-Nov-1999 05:44 AM EDT (24-Nov-1999 1044 UTC) NNNN Source: Voice of America .