The first of the four abort missions using test vehicles or test rockets for India's human space mission - Gaganyaan- is planned in May 2023, the Parliament was told on Wednesday.
"The first test vehicle mission, TV-D1, is planned in May 2023, followed by the second test vehicle TV-D2 mission and first uncrewed mission of Gaganyaan (LVM3-G1) in the first quarter of 2024," Science and Technology Minister Dr Jitendra Singh told the Lok Sabha in a written reply to a question about the status of the human space mission.
"The second series of test vehicle missions (TV-D3& D4) and LVM3-G2 mission with robotic payload is planned next. The crewed mission is planned by end of 2024 based on the outcome of the successful test vehicle and uncrewed missions," he said.
According to him, the total expenditure incurred for Gaganyaan programme as on 30th October 2022 is Rs 3,040 crore.
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On the current status of the Gaganyaan project, Singh said: "All the design activities are completed, proto models testing commenced for all systems. Manufacturing of all the systems have been initiated and in progress."
He said the Human rated Launch vehicle systems (HLVM3) are tested and qualified. All propulsion systems tests for higher margins completed. The Test Vehicle TV-D1 mission for demonstration of crew escape system designed, and stage for first flight realised. The Crew Module structure for TV-D1 mission is delivered. Static tests of all Crew Escape System motors have been completed. Batch testing is in progress.
He also said the first semester of Astronauts training has been completed. Crew evaluation and assessment activities have also been completed.
"Orbital module for uncrewed G1 (Gaganyaan 1) mission realisation in progress. For qualification of Parachutes and pyros through Ground and Air drop tests underway.A Recovery trials of crew module from sea commenced at Water Survival Test Facility (WSTF), Indian Navy, Kochi," Singh said.
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Agreeing that the target for launching first crewed mission of Gaganyaan was 2022 Singh said the delay was due to Covid-19 lockdowns, disruptions in raw material supply chain from foreign sources, and delays in hardware realisation from industries and hence the schedule is modified.
"Moreover, Gaganyaan Advisory Council has recommended testing of Crew Escape System and deceleration systems through four abort missions using Test Vehicle (TV) and Integrated Air Drop Tests before proceeding with crewed missions. This is in addition to the two uncrewed missions planned earlier," Singh said.