I was reading this article (sorry for the terrible formatting), and I noticed this statement made by an ISRO official:

Nair said no decision has yet been made about sending Indian astronauts into space. "We are assessing the feasibility of manned missions and these studies will take another year to complete," he said. "Once approved by the government, it will take seven to eight years for ISRO to put an Indian in orbit."

The part about feasibility studies caught my eye - hasn't it kind of already been proven feasible to put people in space? It's been done countless times before. What is feasibility studies is ISRO conducting?

  • $\begingroup$ I would venture studies is actually about ISRO, it's indigenous technology, training & stuff - rather than whether manned space-flight itself is feasible. $\endgroup$
    – Everyone
    Commented Nov 5, 2013 at 4:30

2 Answers 2


As @Everyone said it's not regarding feasibility but it's matter of budget and absence of human rated space vehicle and components


Development of a fully autonomous orbital vehicle to carry a two- member crew into a low-Earth orbit (LEO) has already begun. ISRO sources said the flight is likely to be in 2016. Government had allocated 950 million (US \$14.5 million) for pre- project initiatives for 2007 through 2008. A manned mission into space would require about 124 billion (US \$1.9 billion) and a period of seven years. Planning Commission estimates that a budget of 50 billion (US \$765.0 million) is required for initial work on the manned mission during the eleventh five-year plan (2007– 12). A project report prepared by ISRO has been cleared by space commission. In February 2009 the Government of India gave the green light for the manned space flight programme, due to launch in 2016.

Human rated vehicle

The failure of GSLV in 2010 one made in India and other imported from Russia made the human space program to loss it's momentum.

The NASA CCP human-rating standards require that the probability of loss on ascent is no more than 1 in 500, and that the probability of loss on descent is no more than 1 in 500. The overall mission loss risk, which includes vehicle risk from micrometeorites and orbital debris while in orbit for up to 210 days is no more than 1 in 270. [2] Maximum sustained G-loads are limited to three Earth-standard g's

ISRO must ensure that these conditions are satisfied

Space accessories

ISRO has planned to make everything indigenouly instead of buying from overseas countries. So lots of research must done to ensure reliability

Radhakrishnan, however, said ISRO already has a budget of Rs 150 crore for conducting pre-project studies and developing critical technologies including environmental control, space suit, reentry and crew escape system. The rocket must have man-rating, he noted.

And another important thing I think is training astronauts and ISRO is now building astronaut training facilities in Bangalore and still it's under construction and it will become functional by 2013


According to ISRO, the maiden flight of the GSLV-Mark-III, with mission designation of LVM3-X1, is scheduled for April 2014, and will be carrying the Indian crew capsule. This will be a suborbital test flight, and will test the aerothermal characteristics of the capsule during atmospheric re-entry, and likely also communication blackout.


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