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Business News/ News / India/  ISRO aims to test Gaganyaan crew module mission by July, says Chairman Somanath

In a major step to boost its ambitious Gaganyaan mission, the Indian Space Research Organisation, is gearing up to test the crew module in July this year, said Chairman S Somnath on Monday.

The Indian space agency is also planning to host a range of other activities as well. He informed that the space agency will also work for the launch of the synthetic aperture radar mission in association with the National Aeronautics Space Agency (NASA).

"The same rocket (GSLV) is bound to take the NISAR as well. In the coming months we are going to have launches of PSLVs as well as GSLV MkIII," said S Somnath. The NISAR (NASA-ISRO Synthetic Aperture Radar Mission) is a collaboration between NASA and ISRO to make global measurements of the causes and consequences of land surface changes.

What will the next ISRO launch will be all about?

In his interview, S Somnath said that the next launch would be a climate and weather observation satellite called ‘INSAT-3Ds’. The launch will be performed using a GSLV rocket.

"The SHAR (Satish Dhawan Space Centre, Sriharikota) will be abuzz with activities towards all of this," he said.

About Gaganyaan mission

Scientists are working on conducting various tests for the ambitious Gaganyaan mission. The agency is also working in collaboration with the Navy and others in this connection. Talking about the mission's progress, he said that the team is aiming to launch the vehicle in July. For that to happen, it is conducting a test vehicle launch in May-June.

"We will be launching a test vehicle mission now. The target is to conduct it by July. The vehicle for conducting the test is already here in Satish Dhawan Space Centre here." he said. The launch will demonstrate the emergency escape drill for astronauts.

"The vehicle will be taken to an altitude of 14 km and from there we would create a problem or try to destroy it and see how the crew module escapes. That we have to demonstrate. We are talking to various stakeholders like the Navy." he said.

Before launching an unmanned mission next year, the space agency will repeat the test again and again. After that the whole crew module would be taken to orbit and return, probably next year, said S Somanath.

Launchpad for private players in Tamil Nadu

ISRO chief shared the ongoing development on the launch pad which is currently being constructed in Kulasekarapattinam in Tamil Nadu about 600 km from Chennai. He said that the construction plan is almost in the final stages of acquiring 2,000 acres of land. Notably, the launchpad will be used for a small launch vehicle in Kulasekarapattinam and possible rocket launches for private players in the future.

The land acquisition process is almost completed and some more land is yet to be acquired" he said. Somanath said the space agency was under discussion about the launch of the next-generation launch vehicle (NGLV). "Now is not the right time to discuss it. It is a rocket which we want to be a recoverable stage, and basically (we are) working on liquid and semi-cryogenic technology," he said.

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Updated: 29 May 2023, 06:12 PM IST
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