According to Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) Chief, K Sivan, the space organization is now planning to send an astronaut in its own rocket by December, 2021. While addressing the eighth convocation of IIT, Bhubaneswar, Sivan said that the lunar mission might not have been completely successful and the plan to make a soft landing on the lunar surface by Chandrayaan-2's 'Vikram' module did not go as per script but that it will not have any bearing with on ISRO's Gaganyaan. It is an Indian orbital spacecraft that is designed on the basis of Indian Human Spaceflight Programme. It is designed to carry three people and is expected to orbit the earth at an altitude of 400 Kms.
He also spoke about ISRO’s future missions and said that by December 2020, ISRO is expected to have its first unmanned mission of human spaceplane. He further added that the second target that ISRO is looking at right now is the unmanned human space plane which the organization has been targetted for July, 2021.
The Gaganyaan mission is extremely important for India because it is expected to boost the science and technology capability of the country. Talking about innovation, the Sivan said that every time something is innovated, it comes with its fair share of risks and potential failures. He said that he does not need to tell anyone of the number of times that Edison had failed while he was trying to invent the light bulb. He further added that everyone is also aware of the number of times that ISRO has failed in the launch of new vehicles but also mentioned that these failures did not become obstacles and ISRO has been using them as learning opportunities.
Sivan went on to say that Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam once said that your dream or idea must not make you sleep. He also said that if the students wanted to become like Dr. Kalam, they should follow his idea and the message he gave and not chase just his hairstyle.
Talking about Chandrayaan 2, he said that the orbiter will give data for seven and half years and that all the technologies of ISRO's moon mission have proved accurate except for the soft landing. He further asked the students if that was not enough success already.
Sivan also said that the students must take calculated risks and then go on to innovate. He said that if no chance is taken, there is no chance of a significant achievement in life and also that calculated risks help save a person from problematic areas. He also mentioned that despite being considered poor by many, India is number one in the world for sending remote sensing satellites. He concluded his speech by quoting Mahatama Gandhi and said that Gandhi said local problems need local solutions.
On a related note, Prof R V Raja Kumar, Director of IIT Bhubaneswar presided over the convocation function 32 Ph.d, 105 M Tech, 67 M Sc and 152 B Tech students received their degrees.