PM Modi to dedicate three ISRO facilities to nation on February 27

Prime Minister Narendra Modi will review progress of Gaganyaan human spaceflight programme during a visit to Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre in Thiruvananthapuram

Updated - February 26, 2024 04:34 pm IST

Published - February 26, 2024 12:34 pm IST - THIRUVANANTHAPURAM

PM Modi will review the progress of the Gaganyaan human spaceflight programme and dedicate three facilities of ISRO the nation on February 27 (Tuesday). File photo

PM Modi will review the progress of the Gaganyaan human spaceflight programme and dedicate three facilities of ISRO the nation on February 27 (Tuesday). File photo | Photo Credit: SANDEEP SAXENA

Prime Minister Narendra Modi will review the progress on the Gaganyaan human spaceflight programme and dedicate three facilities of the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) to the nation during a visit to the Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre (VSSC) in Thiruvananthapuram on February 27 (Tuesday).

Mr. Modi is also likely to announce the names of the astronauts of the Gaganyaan programme, which, reportedly, includes a Keralite. Mr. Modi will also bestow the ‘mission patches’ on them. Gaganyaan, expected to be launched in 2025, envisages demonstration of human spaceflight capability by sending astronauts to orbit and returning them safely to earth.

Mr. Modi, who is scheduled to visit VSSC at 10.45 a.m., will dedicate the Trisonic Wind Tunnel established at the VSSC, integration facilities for the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) set up at the Satish Dhawan Space Centre, Sriharikota, and the Semi-cryogenic Integrated Engine and Stage Test Facility (SIET) at the ISRO Propulsion Complex in Mahendragiri in Tamil Nadu.

The three facilities have been developed at a cost of ₹1,800 crore.

The Trisonic Wind Tunnel has an overall length of 170 metres. With a test section size of 1.2 metres, it produces a “controlled uniform airflow” over scale models of rockets and aircraft to assess their aerodynamic characteristics for optimal design development. The wind tunnel, which is the first of its kind in the country, has a Mach number range of 0.2 to 4, which means it can generate speeds ranging from subsonic to supersonic up to four times the speed of sound (Mach number 4). The Trisonic Wind Tunnel will provide self-reliance in the end-to-end design of upcoming launch vehicle projects.

The new PSLV Integration Facilities (PIF) at Sriharikota will give the ISRO the capability to increase the number of PSLV missions in a year to 15. At the new facility, the PSLV rocket will be integrated parallelly with the refurbishment of the launch pad, saving time.

SIET will give the ISRO the capability to test the SCE-2000 semi-cryogenic engine which uses refined kerosene (named ISROSENE) and liquid oxygen as propellants and the rocket stage. The facility is at the ISRO Propulsion Complex in Mahendragiri.

ISRO chairman S. Somanath, VSSC director S. Unnikrishnan Nair and directors of various ISRO centre’s will be among those present.

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