ISRO Chief K Sivan explained that work has started on Chandrayaan-3.
Sivan explained that four astronauts have been selected for India’s first manned mission, Gaganyaan, and that their training will begin in the next week of January.
“We’ve identified the four astronauts, they were shipped to Russia for medical checkup. They’ll undergo training in Russia,” that the ISRO chief said. An advisory committee has also been formed for Gaganyaan. The practice of the astronauts in Russia was finalised after Prime Minister Narendra Modi met Russian President Vladimir Putin in September This past Year.
This emerged after talks between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Russian President Vladimir Putin as they chose to step up cooperation in the field of outer space.
“There is a special test for these astronauts. This was originally done at IIM after which Russia and based on the outcomes, four people were chosen. They’re from the Air Force,” Sivan said.
Gaganyaan is reported to possess two unmanned and yet manned flight to space. “We’ll be sending a humanoid within unmanned mission. Six science experiments will be conducted, related to microgravity and bioscience,” Sivan said.
The ISRO chief also added that work has begun on Chandrayaan-3, and has obtained the government’s approval. He added that work is ongoing parallelly on Gaganyaan and Chandrayaan-3, which could require 14-16 months, which might lead to functions being pushed to 2021. The general cost of the project will be approximately Rs 600 crore.
Addressing the difficulties with Chandrayaan-2, Sivan said that they have made great progress on it even though they could not land successfully. “The orbiter is still functioning, and it will function for the next seven years to produce science data,” he explained. Chandrayaan-3 is going to be a repeat of Chandrayaan-2, also will connect to the Chandrayaan-2 orbiter already in space. P Veeramuthuvel will be the project director for Chandrayaan-3.
“There is no objective difference between Chandrayaan-2 and Chandrayaan-3 since we could not reach the goal we had. Therefore, in Chandrayaan-3, we want to demonstrate a soft landing. To take lander from here to the moon, we don’t have an orbiter. A dedicated vehicle will choose the lander into the moon. The lander will be a replica of the Vikram Lander,” the ISRO chief.
Chandrayaan-2, India’s toughest lunar mission was launched onboard a heavy rocket (GSLV Mark-III) from Sriharikota on July 22, 2019. It was the first space mission to try a soft landing on the moon South Polar region. The lander was scheduled to make a gentle landing on the moon’s south pole on September 7.
When asked when the landing location would be shifted to get Chandrayaan-3, the ISRO chief said that there was no issue with the landing place.
“We have learnt from failures. We knew everything went wrong,” he explained.
The debris of the lander was flagged by Chennai techie Shanmuga Subramanian, which was then declared by NASA.
Sivan said that he enjoyed the techie’s efforts and congratulated himbut when asked why no pictures were released, he explained,”We’re totally transparent. The day after Chandrayaan-2 made a hard landing, we had announced that we had found where it landed and we had found the debris. We didn’t put pictures because that is tactical information”.
Along with this, a second space interface is coming up in Tamil Nadu’s Thoothukudi, for which land acquisition was initiated, the ISRO chief stated. The space port is going to be spread over a place of 2300 acres.
As previously announced its brand new rocket, the Small Satellite Launch Vehicle (SSLV) will soon be launched this past year. The first few SSLV launches are going to be from Sriharikota.Sivan also stated that satellites that were slated for launch in 2019 but weren’t done will be released by March 2020, and that a total of 25 satellite launches are planned for this year.
ISRO will also be launching its own GPS system, and cellular phones will be outfitted with NavIC. NavIC is the functional name of this Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System, an autonomous regional satellite navigation program. NavIC, the satellite, has been operational since 2018, and is part of ISRO’s aim to provide India its version of GPS.