The Indian Air Force (IAF) has been assigned the task of selecting and training the 10 crew members for the India’s first human spaceflight programme - Gaganyaan - by the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), Times of India has reported.
“We have fixed all criteria and requirements for crew selection and training and submitted the same to the IAF. The air force has now been given the full task of selection and training of the crew. The first two levels of training of the crew will happen at the IAF’s Institute of Aerospace Medicine (Bengaluru) and the final phase of training will be abroad,” ISRO chairman K Sivan was quoted in the report as saying.
The ISRO chairman said that the space agency will pick three candidates of 10 trained by the IAF. “We want IAF to train 10 candidates for the Gaganyaan mission. Out of them, we will pick final three for the maiden space journey,” he said.
Sivan, on training the crew abroad, said that they have two-three countries like Russia and France in mind but “no final call has been taken yet”.
Institute of Aerospace Medicine (IAM) is the only institute in India and south east Asia that conducts research in aerospace medicine and trains airmen and pilots. It is affiliated to the Armed Forces Medical Services (AFMS).
“Since the infrastructure such as simulators at IAM is one of the best in the country, ISRO wants to join hands with IAM to train the crew members of Gaganyaan mission,” said Bipin Puri, director general of AFMS.