Meet The 4 Astronauts Selected For India's Gaganyaan Mission

(MENAFN- AsiaNet News) Prime Minister Narendra Modi is set to introduce the four astronauts selected for India's landmark Gaganyaan mission during an event at the Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre in Thiruvananthapuram on Tuesday. Identified as Prashanth Nair, Angad Prathap, Ajit Krishnan, and Chauhan, all distinguished as either wing commanders or group captains, these individuals have undergone rigorous training at Bengaluru's astronaut training facility, marking a significant milestone in India's space exploration journey.

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The selection process for these astronauts has been meticulous, starting with numerous candidates and narrowing down to 12 test pilots after initial evaluations at the Institute of Aerospace Medicine (IAM) under the Indian Air Force (IAF) in Bengaluru. Following multiple rounds of assessments, IAM and ISRO shortlisted the final four candidates for the prestigious mission.

In early 2020, ISRO facilitated the initial training of the selected candidates in Russia, with subsequent training conducted by various agencies, including the armed forces, amidst the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic. ISRO's Human Space Flight Centre (HSFC) has been actively engaged in providing advanced simulations and equipment for the astronauts' preparation, supplemented by regular flying activities with the IAF to maintain their fitness.

The Gaganyaan mission, slated for 2025, aims to propel humans into space, positioning them in a Low Earth Orbit approximately 400 kilometres above the Earth's surface for a three-day mission. Employing an LVM3 rocket equipped with diverse propulsion systems, including solid, liquid, and cryogenic stages, the mission represents a historic leap in India's space exploration endeavours.

Under the guidance of S Somanath, the head of ISRO, rigorous testing procedures, comprising over 100 tests and 20 major assessments, including three uncrewed HLVM3 missions, are underway in preparation for the manned mission scheduled in 2025. These developments underscore India's steadfast commitment to advancing its capabilities in space exploration and positioning itself as a prominent player in the global space arena.

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