New Delhi, Oct 21 (EFE).- India successfully carried the first test flight of its Gaganyaan space mission Saturday, with which the country intends to send its first manned mission to space in 2024, and which served to test the escape system astronauts would use in case of emergency.
“We are very happy to announce the success of the mission. The objective was to demonstrate the crew escape system. The vehicle slightly exceeded the speed of sound before starting the system,” said the head of India’s Space Research Organization S. Somanath from the control center once the test was completed.
Although the ship’s takeoff was scheduled for 8am local time (2:30 GMT) from the center of Sriharikota, in the southeastern state of Andhra Pradesh, it was finally delayed for two hours for undisclosed reasons. However, it was reported that he had been correctly identified before the launch.
The probe rose for about two minutes propelled by two large rockets, until a small capsule in which the astronauts are supposed to travel in the future was ejected, and with the help of three large parachutes began a slow descent of about eight minutes before landing in the sea.
This was the first test flight of the Gaganyaan space mission, which aims to demonstrate India’s capability for human spaceflight.
Gaganyaan has a budget of more than $1.08 billion and plans to launch a three-member crew into a 400-kilometer orbit for a three-day mission after which they will return to Earth, a first operation that will take place in 2024 according to Indian media.
In addition to this objective, which they hope will serve as a prelude to larger manned missions, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi spoke this week about the space roadmap that the country has for the coming years. It highlights the sending of the first astronaut to the Moon in 2040, the construction of a space station by 2035 and new missions to neighboring planets Venus and Mars.
India’s new aspirations in space follow the successful launch and landing of the unmanned space mission Chandrayaan-3, which made India the first country to successfully land on the south pole of the Moon, a region of the satellite, which until then had never been explored from the surface.
Furthermore, in September India launched its first mission to study the Sun, Aditya-L1 (Sun, in Sanskrit.) EFE