Human Space Flight Program: Mission Gaganyan

"Failure will never overtake me if my determination to succeed is strong enough" - Dr. Kalam
After the failure of our Chandrayan-II mission, ISRO is now looking forward to the Gaganyaan mission. Hope this time we will achieve a 100% success to become a 4th nation in the world after USA, Russia, China to reach this fleet.



The mission designed by ISRO is in such a way that it’s largely autonomous. The capsule weighs 3.7 tonne will orbit the Earth at 400 km altitude for upto 7days.
A crewed orbital spacecraft is being designed to carry 3 people onboard with docking capability.
ISRO is going to use its most advanced launch vehicle, GSLV MARK III. The launch is planned in Dec, 2021.
The crew module is manufactured by HAL and had its first un-crewed experimental flight on 18 Dec, 2014. As of May 2019, design of the crew module has been completed.
·         Manufacturer HAL and ISRO
·         Country of origin India
·         Operator ISRO
·         Applications Crewed orbital vehicle


·         Spacecraft type Crewed
·         Design life 7 days
·         Launch mass 7,800 kg (17,200 lb.) (Includes service module)
·         Dry mass 3,735 kg (8,234 lb.)
·         Crew capacity 3
  • ·         Diameter: 3.5 m (11 ft.)
  • ·         Height: 3.58 m (11.7 ft.)
  • ·         Volume 8m3 (280 cu ft.)[4]
  • ·         Power Photovoltaic array
  • ·         Regime Low Earth orbit


  • ·         Status In development
  • ·         Maiden launch December 2020 (uncrewed), December 2021 (Crewed)


Preliminary studies and technological development of Gaganyan started in 2006 under the generic name "Orbital Vehicle".
The plan was to design a simple capsule with an endurance of about a week in space, a capacity of two astronauts, and a splashdown landing after re-entry.
The design was finalized by March 2008 and was submitted to the Government of India for funding. The funding for the Indian Human Spaceflight Programme was sanctioned in February 2009, but it fell short of full political support and it obtained limited developmental funding.
Initially, the first uncrewed flight of the orbital vehicle was proposed to be in 2013, and then it was revised to 2016. However, in April 2012 it was reported that funding problems placed the future of the project in serious doubt; and in August 2013 it was announced that all crewed spaceflight efforts by India had been designated as being 'off ISRO's priority list'.
By early 2014 the project was reconsidered and was one of the main beneficiaries of a substantial budget increase announced in February 2014.
ISRO is developing the Gaganyan orbital vehicle on the tests performed with their scaled 550 kg Space Capsule Recovery Experiment (SRE), which was launched and recovered in January 2007.
The latest push for the Indian Human Spaceflight Programme took place in 2017, and it was accepted and formally announced by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi on 15 August 2018. The current design calls for a crew of three.

Funding and Infrastructure

MOU signed between HAL and ISRO
In December 2018, the government approved ? 100 billion (US$1.5 billion) for a 7-days crewed flight of 3 astronauts to take place by 2021.
Madhavan Chandranathan, director of Satish Dhawan Space Centre (SDSC), stated that ISRO would need to set up an astronaut training facility in Bangalore. Newly established Human Space Flight Centre (HSPC) will coordinate the IHSF efforts.
Existing Launch facilities would be upgraded according to Human Space Flight project with extra facilities.
Russia is providing a helping hand to us by giving astronaut training and assisting in some aspects in the development of the launcher.

Several building blocks of this mission which ISRO has already tested are

·         Re-entry Space Capsule
·         Pad Abort Test
·         Safe Crew Ejection Mechanism in case of rocket failure
·         Flight Suit, developed by DEBEL
·         Launch Vehicle GSLV-MKIII
Flight Suit: Developed by DEBEL
After meeting all the required technological keystones, the Indian Human Spaceflight Programme was accepted and formally announced by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi on 15 August 2018.
India PM announcing about Mission: Gaganyaan on 15 Aug, 2018 from Red Fort, Delhi


IAF completed Level-1 of Indian Astronaut selection at Institute of Aerospace Medicine. Selected Test Pilots underwent extensive physical exercise tests, lab investigations, radio-logical tests, clinical tests & evaluation on various facets of their psychology.


·         Indian Manned Spacecraft. Astronautix. 2014.
·         Gaganyaan: Astronauts on mission likely to be pilots, crew module design to be finalised soon. India Today. 20 January 2019.
·         Kunhikrishnan, P. "India's Human Spaceflight Programme: GAGANYAAN" (PDF). UNOOSA. Archived from the original (PDF) on 20 February 2019. Retrieved 20 February 2019.
·         Rs 10,000 crore plan to send 3 Indians to space by 2022. The Times of India. 29 December 2018.
·         "First Unmanned Mission Under Gaganyaan By December 2020, Says ISRO Chief”.
·         "Rs 10,000 crore plan to send 3 Indians to space by 2022” - Times of India”. The Times of India. Retrieved 29 December 2018.
·         Gaganyaan mission to take Indian astronaut to space by 2022: PM Modi . The Hindu. 15 August 2018.