by Staff Correspondent
Indian Space Research Organization, ISRO reported it successfully conducted the third long duration hot test of the liquid propellant Vikas Engine for the core L110 liquid stage of the human rated GSLV MkIII vehicle, as part of the engine qualification requirements for the Gaganyaan Programme.
The step is a vital one for the success of the ambitious human space mission of ISRO. In an official statement ISRO said that the engine was fired for a duration of 240 seconds at the engine test facility of ISRO Propulsion Complex (IPRC), Mahendragiri in Tamil Nadu.
The performance of the engine met the test objectives, and the engine parameters were closely matching with the predictions during the entire duration of the test. ISRO, which is gearing up the first unmanned Gaganyan launch this December, has been making efforts to catch up with the deadline it set for itself. Though the pandemic pushed the Gaganyaan manned flight further, ISRO is now gearing for the unmanned flight.
Four Indian astronauts’ candidates have already undergone generic space flight training in Russia as part of this Gaganyaan programme. ISRO been working on the heavy-lift launcher GSLV Mk III which is set to launch Gaganyaan.
Formal announcement of the Gaganyaan programme was made by Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his Independence Day address on August 15, 2018. The initial target was to launch the human spaceflight before the 75th anniversary of India’s independence on August 15, 2022, but it may be rescheduled as per sources.
The objective of the Gaganyaan programme is to demonstrate the capability to send humans to low earth orbit on board an Indian launch vehicle and bring them back to earth safely. The first unmanned mission is planned in December 2021 and the second unmanned one in 2022-23, followed by the human spaceflight demonstration.