Mission Gaganyaan: Indian Astronauts To Start Training At Russia’s Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Center

The Mission Gaganyaan is in full swing as training for four Indian Astronauts is set to begin at Russia’s Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Center in the Star City on February 10, the Center said in a statement on Monday.

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“As part of international cooperation, four representatives of the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) are beginning their training at the Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Center on February 10, 2020, as candidates for a space flight,” the statement says.

All the candidates for Mission Gangayaan have served as fighter jet pilots in the Indian Air Force. They have been selected by Indian ISRO after comprehensive tests and training, according to the statement.

“The general program of the Indian candidates’ training, which will last one year, envisages comprehensive and bio-medical preparations with regular physical exercises and the study of the manned Soyuz spacecraft’s systems,” the Center specified.

Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Center Head Pavel Vlasov said he was positive that the Indian astronauts’ immense experience of learning to operate aircraft would enable them to successfully cope with the task of studying the spacecraft.

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He emphasized that the Russian side would do everything possible to ensure that the stay of Indian candidates at the Cosmonaut Training Center would be comfortable and productive.

During their training, the Indian astronauts for Mission Gangayaan will practice operations during an emergency landing of a descent capsule in various climatic and geographic conditions, will undergo flights aboard an Il-76MDK plane that will simulate short-term zero gravity modes and other types of emergency training. They will undergo the larger part of their training at the Cosmonaut Training Center.

Russia’s State Space Corporation Roscosmos announced on July 1, 2019, that its division Glavkosmos and the ISRO’s Mission Gangayaan or Human Space Flight Center signed a contract on the consultative support for the selection, medical examination and training of Indian astronauts.

Earlier, the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) said the training of astronauts for India’s ambitious ‘Gaganyaan’ manned space mission will start with collaboration from Russia. Four astronauts have been identified for the mission, ISRO chief K Sivan said. The work related to Chandrayaan-3 and Gaganyaan was going on simultaneously, he said.

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“We had good progress on Gaganyaan in 2019, many of the designs were completed. Four astronauts have been identified for the training purpose. The training for the astronauts who are from the Indian Air Force will be planned in the third week of January which will take place in Russia,” said Sivan.

Indian PM Narendra Modi had said that Russia will train the Indian astronauts for Gaganyaan mission. Scheduled for 2022, the Indian astronauts will be sent to space for seven days onboard Gaganyaan, a crew capsule, to be launched with the help of Geo-Synchronous Launch Vehicle (GSLV). If Gaganyaan is successful, India would become the fourth nation to achieve the feat.

Inputs From Tass.