This year, India will send three explorers on the indigenously manufactured Samudrayaan to a depth of 500 metres beneath the surface of the ocean. The steel sphere that will house the aquanauts on their expedition has already been designed by engineers at Chennai’s National Institute of Ocean Technology.
On the other hand, the official said on the sidelines of the Indian Science Congress taking place here that the plan to send the Samudrayaan to 6,000 metres deep into the sea may be delayed due to the difficulty in obtaining the titanium sphere capable of withstanding pressure at those depths.
According to him, titanium is the preferred metal since a steel sphere can sustain pressure up to a depth of 500 metres but will collapse as it descends further. By the end of next year, India plans to conduct a human spaceflight.
The ISRO intends to launch an uncrewed trip this year to test and certify technology for the Gaganyaan mission. The situation in Ukraine has already pushed the timeframes for human spaceflight to the end of 2024.
“It is not like sending a satellite to orbit. We cannot take chances when it comes to human beings. We are being cautious and careful. Globally, it took about 10 years for countries to develop human space flight capability, which we are doing in four,” ISRO chairman S Somanath said.