Bangalore: The Indian Space Research Organisation's (ISRO) "pre-project initiatives" to send an Indian into space have received a sanction of Rs50 crore in the union budget for 2007-08. According to reports, ISRO is working at making such a flight possible by 2015.
ISRO's annual budget, according to reports, may have been hiked by 30 per cent, from Rs2, 997 crore in 2006-07 to Rs3, 858 crore in 2007-08.
Among ISRO's initiatives, during the 11th 5-year plan, is an orbiter to Mars in 2014. Following the manned space shot in 2015, an Indian is also due to step on the moon in 2020. ISRO had formally unveiled its plans for the manned space flight last year in November.
According to reports, the budget for such a manned mission is estimated to be about Rs10,000 crore, spread over eight years. The funds will allow ISRO to construct new facilities, particularly for training, and also develop new technologies for manned space flights.
ISRO has said that R&D organisations, like the Institute of Aerospace Medicine, National Aerospace Laboratories (NAL), Defence Food Research Laboratory (DFRL) and medical research institutes, will also be involved in these missions.
For the initial manned mission to space, ISRO plans to use a GSLV-MK II rocket, which will be powered by an indigenous cryogenic engine. The GSLV will carry a three-ton space capsule, designed to carry two people onboard. The rocket is expected to inject the capsule into an orbit about 300-400 km from the earth, approximately 16 minutes after blast-off. After orbiting the earth, the capsule will splash down in the Bay of Bengal.
The voyage to the moon will see the capsule taking about five days to reach its destination.