India is poised to carry out a significant test in its ambitious crewed space endeavour, Gaganyaan, as early as the coming month, as stated by the project director of the mission, R. Hutton, during an interview with Reuters. Four astronauts are currently being trained by ISRO, who is trying to increase the cohort.
The Gaganyaan mission aims to create a human-habitable spacecraft that will launch a three-person crew into a 400 km (250 mile) orbit for three days before splashing down safely in the Indian Ocean.
ISRO has stated that when Gaganyaan is finished, it will look at ways to maintain a human presence in space.
Before conducting a series of additional tests prior to the actual launch phase, the team wants to test its crew escape mechanism, which can be used to remove astronauts in an emergency. The most crucial thing we must guarantee is safety, according to Hutton, who was quoted by Reuters.
The mission, which comes after the space agency’s momentous landing of its Chandrayaan-3 ship on the lunar south pole, has been allotted around 90.23 billion Indian rupees ($1.1 billion).
The mission is anticipated to be launched from Sriharikota, the nation’s primary spaceport, before 2024, however a precise timetable has not yet been disclosed.
In his 2018 speech on Independence Day, Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched the Gaganyaan Mission, with the goal of completing it by 2022.
The pace of the project was slowed down by the limitations imposed by the Covid-19 epidemic in 2020–21, and now the space agency plans to launch the project by the end of 2024 or the start of 2025.
According to the ISRO’s official website, the three-person crew will be launched into a 400-kilometer orbit for the three-day mission, followed by a safe return to Earth. In the Indian Ocean’s waters, the team will touch down to complete their adventure.
The project involves the development of a number of crucial technologies, including emergency escape plans, human-rated launch vehicles that are intended to carry the crew to space safely, and a system that simulates life support systems similar to those found on Earth.
Earlier this year, Union Minister Jitendra Singh said about the first unmanned mission, “The first mission will be totally unmanned and after that, we will send a female robot in the second one,” he added.
He had also mentioned, “The main Gaganyaan will be launched at the end of 2023 or in 2024. It will be delayed a bit”, Singh told reporters after a function here.”
Singh said that before the actual Gaganyaan mission, “we will send a non-human mission”. “It is important to go and come back safely. It will land in water. It will ensure the security of the person”, he said.
He added that for the first time, an Indian-origin man will be going on an Indian mission. “Otherwise Rakesh Sharma had gone on a mission but it was a Russian mission. It is an indigenous mission with indigenous astronauts, indigenous technical know-how, and indigenous funding. We should thank the PM for making funding available to this project. It was delayed due to COVID-19 “, he said.
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