India Approves Plan for Human Spaceflight

As we have been telling you for months here at Parabolicarc, the space race in Asia is heating up, which will probably put pressure on the United States to speed up its own efforts. The Times reports that India has finalized its plans for human spaceflight within six years:

India has approved a £1.7 billion plan to launch its first astronauts into space by 2015, in its latest bid to close the gap with China in what many see as a 21st Century Asian version of the Cold War race for the Moon.

The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) will attempt to put two people into orbit 172 miles (275 km) above the Earth for seven days, according to a proposal approved by the Planning Commission at a meeting on Friday.

“ISRO needs to be supported as it has done marvellous job in the field of Space Science. That’s why Planning Commission will support it,” Montek Singh Ahluwalia, Deputy Chairman of the Planning Commission, told reporters.

“An unmanned flight will be launched in 2013-2014 and manned mission likely to launch by 2014-2015,” he said.

You can read the full story here.