Indian Space and Research Organization (ISRO) has announced its ambitious plan to put up a space station in the next decade. The space agency’s chief, K. Sivan, said the idea is to build the space station in the next seven years, and launch it by 2030. “We have to sustain the Gaganyaan programme after the launch of (the) human space mission. In this context, India is planning to have its own space station,” K.Sivan quoted. The only countries that have space stations so far are the US, Russia, China and a consortium of nations that own the International Space Station (ISS). If everything goes according to plan, this will make India part of a very exclusive club.
While India is targeting 2030 as the date to launch its 20-tonne space station, more details will soon emerge after ISRO’s maiden manned mission, called Gaganyaan, will be complete in 2022, Dr Sivan told reporters in New Delhi. The preliminary plan for the space station is to accommodate astronauts for up to 20 days in space, and the project will be an extension of the Gaganyaan mission, he said. It will orbit Earth at an altitude of around 400km.
“The Gaganyaan will take humans and experiments in microgravity to space for seven days and demonstrate technology that will be crucial to understand how many people can stay on board the space station and for how long. However, long-term data can only be gathered by setting up a space station,” a senior Isro scientist said.