Bangalore: Chief of Air Staff, Air Chief Marshal RKS Bhadauri said Thursday the screening process for the selection of crew for Indian Spacer Research Organisation’s (ISRO) proposed humanspace flight programme – Gaganyaan – is being done professionally.
“The screening process is well underway and I think it is being done very professionally. And increasingly, the interaction with ISRO is leading to greater understanding of the screening itself,” said RKS Bhadauri.
The Air Chief Marshal was speaking at the inaugural session of the three-day 58th Indian annual conference of the Indian Society for Aerospace Medicine (ISAM) here.
Speaking about the role of IAF in the ISRO project, the Air Chief Marshall said the team coordinating with the ISRO can look into the design aspect of the spacecraft such as the life support system, the design of the capsule and the contribution of this aviation medicine division to make sure the scientific body achieves the challenge it has taken up.
Air Marshal MS Butola, director-general medical services (Air), said that screening of the candidates for the ‘Gaganyaan’ project is being done in a very scientific manner.
“The first level of the Gagan Yatri (astronauts) selection process and selection of IAF crew to undergo final astronaut selection and training in Russia is complete,” said Butola. He said the task assigned to them has been completed within the stipulated time frame.
According to an IAF officer 12 persons as ‘Gagan Yatris’ (astronauts) for the Gaganyaan project, has already been shortlisted. Among them seven have gone to Russia for training.
The officer, speaking on condition of anonymity, told this agency that the rest of the selected people would be sent once the batch of seven returns from Russia. “At the time of the launch of the project, one or two ‘Gagan Yatris’ will be selected for the Mission,” added the officer.
‘Gaganyaan’ is India’s manned space mission which the ISRO aims to launch by December 2021.