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ISRO successfully fires Vikas engine that will power Gaganyaan mission to space

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Jan 22, 2022
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Indian Space & Research Organisation (Isro) successfully test-fired the Vikas engine that will power the ambitious Gaganyaan mission into space. The High Thrust Vikas Engine for the Gaganyaan mission was test-fired for a duration of 25 seconds at Isro's Propulsion Complex (IPRC), Mahendragiri.

The test was conducted to check the robustness of the engine by operating beyond its nominal operating conditions. The space agency said that the engine met the test objectives and the engine parameters were closely matched with the predictions during the entire duration of the test.

"With regard to the Vikas engine qualification for the Gaganyaan mission, two engines have already undergone tests under nominal operating conditions for a total duration of 480 seconds," Isro said in a statement. Three more tests are set to be conducted for a cumulative duration of 75 seconds under varying operating conditions as the agency prepares for the first Indian astronaut mission.

While Isro did not disclose the date, it said, "Another high thrust Vikas engine will undergo a long-duration test for 240 seconds to complete the Vikas engine qualification for Gaganyaan mission."

The high thrust test came nearly a week after the agency conducted the qualification test of the Cryogenic Engine by firing it for a duration of 720 seconds. The performance of the engine met the test objectives and the engine parameters were closely matched with the predictions during the entire duration of the test.

"This successful long-duration test is a major milestone for the Human Space Programme Gaganyaan," Isro had said.

Delayed due to the Covid-19 pandemic and successive lockdowns, Gaganyaan, will be launched in 2023. Science & Technology Minister Dr Jitendra Singh had in December said India's maiden human space mission will soar to the skies in 2023, making the country the fourth nation in the world to launch a human spaceflight mission after the US, Russia and China.

Meanwhile, the test vehicle flight for the validation of Crew Escape System performance and the first uncrewed mission of Gaganyaan are scheduled at the beginning of the second half of 2022.
 

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