Debel to develop Space suits for Indian vyomanauts (astronauts) | idrw.org
Debel to develop Space suits for Indian vyomanauts (astronauts)
Two life science laboratories of the Defence Research Development Organisation (DRDO) will be providing food and clothing for the vyomanauts (Indian astronauts will be called so) during the country’s first human space mission – estimated to be a Rs10,000 crore mission – that is waiting for the green signal from the Centre.
While the Mysore-based Defence Food Research Laboratory (DFRL) will dish out ready-to-eat food in space,
the Defence Bioengineering and Electromedical Laboratory (Debel) (both under Defence Research and Development Organisation-DRDO) will design and produce the space suits for the first vyomanaut’s of India.
“DFRL already has the experience of providing food for space-bound men when it readied a menu for cosmonaut Wg Cdr Rakesh Sharma for the Indo-Soviet Manned space flight in 1984.
This time too we would be working with ISRO,” DRDO, Chief Controller, Research and Development (Life Sciences and International Corporation), Dr W Selvamurthy told DNA.
He said Bangalore-based Debel, which has already developed Nuclear Biological and Chemical (NBC) protection suits, flight clothing and protective equipment for air crew, has been assigned to develop the highly complex space suits.
“This will be the first time that space suits will be developed in India andDebel has already started work on it,” he said. The suits are worn both inside and outside the spacecraft. During the mission, the spacecraft would go around Earth 16 times and the astronauts would be exposed to varying temperatures from sub-zero to 60-plus degrees Celsius.The space suits will have to protect the astronauts from the harsh space weather, especially the intense radiation which cut short India’s 2008-launched first unmanned mission to Moon, Chandrayaan-1, when it fried the satellite’s electronic equipment to put an abrupt end to the scheduled two-year mission in 2009.
India’s first human space flight mission – so called because it is not sure whether it will have a woman vyomanaut, and expected to be launched in 2015-16 – envisages the development of a fully autonomous orbital vehicle carrying two crew members to about 300-km low earth orbit and return to earth after a week.
The human space flight mission is looking at three options: one, to send an Indian crew onboard a foreign module; two, to have an Indian crew module with a launcher from abroad; and three, to develop a fully autonomous orbital vehicle which can carry the Indian crew members to the low earth orbit and return safely.