Elon Musk on Wednesday congratulated the Indian Space Research Organisation (Isro) for successfully conducting the third long-duration hot test on the Vikas Engine that would launch the ambitious Gaganyaan programme.
Musk, the founder of aerospace manufacturing giant SpaceX, commented "Congratulations" on ISRO's tweet.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) July 14, 2021
The engine was fired for a duration of 240 seconds at the ISRO facility in Tamil Nadu's Mahendragiri. "The performance of the engine met the test objectives and the engine parameters were closely matching with the predictions during the entire duration of the test," ISRO said.
This was the final testing of one of the three stages of the launch vehicle which will be used in the mission to carry humans to Space.
Gaganyaan is ISRO's major project of sending humans to space, to a low earth orbit, onboard an Indian vehicle. The first unmanned mission is planned for December 2021 and the second one is scheduled in 2022-23.
The much-anticipated space programme of ISRO was formally announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on August 15, 2018. The initial target was to launch human spaceflight before the 75th anniversary of India's independence on August 15, 2022. ISRO's heavy-lift launcher GSLV Mk III has been identified for the mission.
Meanwhile, a report by The Hindustan Time has said that Elon Musk's SpaceX, according to reports, is planning to partner with local companies to manufacture satellite communications equipment in India.
Space X is also planning to launch its high-speed Starlink satellite broadband services in India this year.