2024 to be a year of Gaganyaan, ISRO eyeing record 12-14 missions this year: S Somanath

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Asserting that 2024 will be the year of Gaganyaan by conducting a series of tests ahead of the first manned mission next year, the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) Monday said it is having a busy schedule with a record 12 to 14 missions planned this year.

Talking to reporters after the successful first-ever New Year's Day launch of the PSLV-C58/XPoSat mission from the SHAR Range here, ISRO Chairman S. Somanath said 2024 has been named as the year of Gaganyaan.ISRO will be carrying out various tests this year before the first manned mission takes off next year, he added.

After the huge success of the First Test Vehicle Abort Mission-1 (TV-D1) to demonstrate the crew escape system last year which marked the first major step to realise the Human space flight mission, ISRO will carry out two more unmanned missions and various other tests that included helicopter drop test and launch paid abort tests this year.On the upcoming missions, Somanath said ISRO is planning about 12 to 14 missions in 2024 using all its three launch vehicles--PSLV, GSLV, and SSLV.

This will include two commercial missions also.Among the satellites to be launched included INSAT-3DS and the INDO-US collaboration satellite NISAR (NASA-ISRO Synthetic Aperture Radar) and a second-generation navigation satellite, using the Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle (GSLV).After launching a remote sensing satellite using PSLV, the third flight of Small Satellite Launch Vehicle (SSLV) will also take place this year, he said, adding that the scramjet engine and the reusable launch vehicle tests will also be carried out in 2024.

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