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India to test-fly indigenous space shuttle within a year: official   2010-04-02 16:25:20 FeedbackPrintRSS

MUMBAI, April 2 (Xinhua) -- India will conduct the first test- flight of a home-built space shuttle within a year, local media reported on Friday.

An India's space shuttle prototype is expected to be launched for the flight-testing from the Sriharikota base off the coast of the southeastern state of Andhra Pradesh in a year, the Asian Age newspaper quoted the Indian Space and Research Organization (ISRO) spokesman Radhakrishnan as saying.

It will be a milestone for India, as the shuttle will climb to an altitude of 60 kilometers above the earth and glide back to earth in the first test-flight, said the spokesman.

The ISRO's scientists will evaluate the various advanced technologies during its first test-flight, including the powered cruise flight, digital auto-pilot for the ascent and descent phases and high-temperature resistance for the coating of its structure as re-entering the atmosphere, according to the spokesman.

Once the first test-flight succeeds, the shuttle will go into the outer space for the tests of the reliability and load-carrying capability in longer duration and distance, added the spokesman.

The India's space shuttle will be a combination of a winged aircraft and a booster rocket. The booster rocket will release the winged aircraft following sending the winged aircraft to a specific altitude, and the winged aircraft will go into space.

The spokesman said the shuttle will be used for human space flight or carrying satellites into orbit after its reliability in the subsequent test-flights is proven.

In the end of the 1980s, the ISRO began to plan developing the space shuttle. In December 2008, a ground test of its booster rocket was done.

Editor: Fang Yang
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