In an in depth interview with TOI, Aditya S Chikodi, enterprise head and GM of design & innovation, Tata Elxsi, stated: “This is for the very first time that ISRO has involved an industry participant to do complete mechanical design and engineering model, which will simulate the crew module that would go to space and then bring the crew back to the Earth in the safest way possible. In order to do this, they just gave us a brief saying that this is what they required and they wanted to have these modules developed for certain space-specific specifications.”
Stating that one of many key necessities of Gaganyaan is the protected restoration of the crew, which should be carried out with minimal lapse of time, the agency stated that is the place its CMRM come into use. “For recovery team training, CMRMs designed and fabricated by us, which simulated the mass, centre of gravity, outer dimensions, interfaces and externals of the actual crew module, were used, both in Kochi and Visakhapatnam,” Chikodi stated.
As reported by TOI earlier the Gaganyaan restoration trial operations entered the second section with the Isro and the Indian Navy beginning harbour trials on the Naval dockyard in Visakhapatnam. Earlier than this, phase-1 of the trials have been carried out on the Navy’s Water Survival Coaching Facility in Kochi.
“Our team, after analysing Isro’s requirements, came out with a design. They also looked at the material that was required. Of course, there was some input from Isro on materials. We looked at the supply chain, the sourcing of the material, the geometry and the engineering of the parts and very specific nitty-gritty… We needed to take care of various different elements on the part of the buoyancy etc,” Chikodi stated.
Except for Elxsi designing and constructing the modules, an vital takeaway from this Isro mission was creation of a neighborhood ecosystem in Bengaluru. “…We had to find partners locally within the ecosystem here in Bengaluru, who could actually fabricate this on our behalf, do the necessary build out and also help us with testing and validation. This was done and all the load test cases were tested and validated by us, post which two of these models were delivered to Isro, which they took to Kochi and Visakhapatnam,” he stated.
On the agency’s previous and future collaborations with Isro, Chikodi stated some electronics on the Mars Orbiter Mission (MOM) had been delivered by the agency.
“We are also in talks with Isro on future collaborations, both as part of Gaganyaan and otherwise, but it’s too early to comment,” he stated, including that the CMRM mission marked the agency’s foray into mechanical design for house.