Gaganyaan launch delayed: Manned mission now in ‘fourth quarter of 2024’ – Times of India


NEW DELHI: The deadline for the launch of India’s first human flight mission ‘Gaganyaan’ has again been pushed back as the Centre has informed that the new launch timeline for the final manned mission has been shifted to the “fourth quarter of 2024”.
Union space minister Jitendra Singh on Wednesday informed the Lok Sabha in a written reply to a question on Wednesday that the uncrewed ‘G1’ mission is targeted to be launched in the last quarter of 2023 followed by the second uncrewed ‘G2’ mission in the second quarter of 2024, before the final human space flight ‘H1’ mission in the fourth quarter of 2024.
The Gaganyaan mission was originally scheduled for launch this year to mark India’s 75th year of independence. However, it faced several setbacks due to the Covid-19 pandemic and successive lockdowns. Last December, the space minister had said the manned mission would be launched in 2023. The new timeline of the fourth quarter of 2024 will give Isro enough time to test and prepare its systems and gagannauts for the final manned mission.
Singh said in view of the paramount importance of crew safety, the two test vehicle (unmanned) missions have been planned to demonstrate the performance of crew escape system and parachute-based deceleration system for different flight conditions. He said the first uncrewed flight is aimed at validating the performance of the human-rated launch vehicle, orbital module propulsion system, mission management, communication system and recovery operations. This G1 mission will also carry a humanoid as payload.
The minister said the astronauts (gagannauts) designated for human space flight missions have been identified and are currently undergoing their mission-specific training in Bengaluru. The first semester of gagannauts’ training has been completed wherein they have undergone course modules on theoretical basics, space medicine, launch vehicles, spacecraft system and ground support infrastructure.
Regular physical fitness sessions, aeromedical training and flying practice are also part of the crew training. Corresponding evaluation and assessment activities have also been completed. The second semester of crew training is currently in progress.

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