New Delhi: The first test vehicle mission for the validation of the crew escape system for Gaganyaan, the proposed maiden human space flight mission of India, is planned for August/September 2023, Union Minister of State for Space, Dr Jitendra Singh told Rajya Sabha today.
Meanwhile, while reiterating that India plans to send three personnel to 6000 metres depth in a submersible, to study the deep sea resources and to biodiversity assessment of the Samudrayaan project, Union Minister of Earth Sciences, Kiren Rijiju told Rajya Sabha did not disclose any dateline for it.
In a statement laid on the table of the Rajya Sabha, Union Minister Dr Singh informed that all subsystems pertaining to the Test Vehicle TV-D1 mission have been realized and the crew module integration is completed. He also added that Static tests of all Crew Escape System motors have been completed as also Ground testing of the Crew Module Propulsion system is completed. Training of crew (Astronauts) is nearing completion, he said.
The Minister said the objective of the Gaganyaan mission is to demonstrate the capability of conducting human space flight missions to Low Earth orbit (LEO) on-board Indian Launch vehicle. The Orbital module consists of a crew module and a Service module. The crew module, which is a pressurized module, acts as living quarters for the crew. The orbital module will be positioned in ~400 km circular orbit around Earth for 1 to 3 days & the Crew module will return back to the designated location in the sea.
The other progress made for the Gaganyaan programme is as follows:
- 2nd crew module sub-assembly identified for the uncrewed mission is completed and delivered by industry.
- Orbital module preparation facility construction completed. The facility has been commissioned for integration activities of the Test vehicle mission. Launchpad augmentation works for Gaganyaan are underway.
- The recovery training plan by ISRO and Indian Navy and recovery training program commenced at Naval Dockyard, Visakhapatnam.
- The delivery of human-centric products for crew training commenced from various national labs. Testing of human-centric products is underway.
Meanwhile, Rijiju stated the Samudrayaan project will not disturb the ecosystem as the submersible is used for the exploration of resources. The mission is aimed to develop a self-propelled manned submersible to carry 3 human beings to a water depth of 6000 meters in the ocean with a suite of scientific sensors and tools for deep ocean exploration. It has an endurance of 12 hours of operational period and 96 hours in case of emergency.
On July 28, 2022, the Government had informed the Rajya Sabha that the manned submersible will allow scientific personnel to observe and understand unexplored deep sea areas by direct interventions. Further, it will enhance the capability for deep-sea man-rated vehicle development, it had told the Rajya Sabha.
The projected timeline is five years for the period 2020-2021 to 2025-2026. National Institute of Ocean Technology (NIOT), Chennai, an autonomous institute under MoES, has developed 6000m depth rated Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV) and various other underwater instruments such as Autonomous Coring System (ACS), Autonomous Underwater Vehicle (AUV) and Deep Sea Mining System (DSM) for the exploration of deep sea.
Rijiju further informed the house today that the Deep Ocean Mission supports the Blue Economy policy of the Government having potential for the country’s GDP growth, and envisages sustainable utilization of ocean resources for economic growth of the country, improved livelihoods and jobs, and ocean ecosystem health.
– global bihari bureau