First Phase of Astronaut Selection For Gaganyaan Complete: IAF

The announcement comes days after PM Modi announced that Russia will help train Indian astronauts for the mission. 

1 min read
First phase of astronaut selection for manned space mission complete: IAF

The Indian Air Force (IAF) on Friday, 6 September, announced the completion of the first phase of the astronaut selection programme for India’s ambitious manned mission to space – Gaganyaan.

The announcement comes days after Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that Russia will help train Indian astronauts for the programme.

The selection was conducted at the Institute of Aerospace Medicine in Bengaluru. The number of pilots selected during the process remains unknown, however, three pilots from this group will be selected for the final mission in 2022.

In a tweet, accompanied by a collage of photos of the section process, IAF said, “IAF completed Level-1 of Indian Astronaut Selection at the Institute of Aerospace Medicine. Selected tests pilots underwent extensive physical exercise tests, lab investigations, radiological tests, clinical tests and evaluation on various facets of their psychology.”

India’s manned space mission is pitched at a cost of Rs 10,000 crore. ISRO’s GSLV MK-III will be used to carry the orbital module, which will have the necessary supplies for a three-member crew for the duration of the mission.

According to ISRO, two unmanned flights – one in December 2020 and another one in July 2021 – will be launched before the manned flight in 2022.

On 3 September, PM Modi in a joint press meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin, had said that Russia will help train Indian astronauts for the Gaganyaan project.

Both leaders also took stock of the work carried out by both counties for Gaganyaan, and the MoU was signed on cooperation on the space mission during Putin’s India visit last year.

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