The Union cabinet chaired by the Prime Minister, today, approved for ambitious Gaganyaan, the indigenous human spaceflight programme. Under this programme, the space flight will carry a three-member crew for a minimum of seven days in space at a total cost of Rs 10,000 crore. Two unmanned flights and one manned flight will be undertaken as part of the programme.
After the cabinet meeting, the government announced that a human rated GSLV Mk-lll will be used to carry the orbital module which will have necessary provisions for sustaining a 3-member crew for the duration of the mission. The necessary infrastructure for crew training, realization of flight systems and ground infrastructure will be established to support the Gaganyaan Programme.
ISRO will collaborate extensively with National agencies, laboratories, academia and industry to accomplish the Gaganyaan Programme objectives. Gaganyaan Programme will establish a broader framework for collaboration between ISRO, academia, industry, national agencies and other scientific organizations. It is expected to generate employment and train human resources in advanced technologies.
The Centre also feels that it will inspire large number of young students to take up science and technology as a possible career choice which will help in national development. “First human space flight demonstration is targeted to be completed within 40 months from the date of sanction. Prior to this, two unmanned flights in full complement will be carried out to gain confidence on the technology and mission management aspects,” it added.
It may be recalled that on the occasion of India’s 72nd Independence Day on August 15, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that by the year 2022, an Indian astronaut, be it a man or a woman, will go on a space odyssey, on board ‘Gaganyaan’. While talking about this major step for the country, PM Modi had said that the manned space mission on board ‘Gaganyaan’ can take place when India celebrates the 75th year of Independence in 2022 or, if possible, even earlier.