ISRO Gaganyaan In-Flight Abort Test: TV-D1

The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) plans to conduct a test of the in-flight abort system of the Gaganyaan crew capsule it is developing for future human space flights. Launch is scheduled for 02:30 UTC on 2023-10-21 from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre, Sriharikota, India.

The rocket, designated TV-D1, is a single stage vehicle derived from the liquid rocket boosters of the Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle (GSLV), equipped with avionics and control systems for autonomous flight.

At an altitude of 11.7 km and speed of 363 metres/second the crew module’s solid rocket escape system will fire to pull the capsule away from the booster rocket… The capsule will follow a ballistic trajectory upward to 16.6 km, where the escape system will be jettisoned. At an altitude of 2.4 km parachutes will deploy to allow a splashdown around 10 km from the launch site. The flight from liftoff to splashdown will take around nine minutes.

The crew module for this flight is a “boilerplate” capsule without crew accommodations, life support, or a heat shield.

Here is a pre-flight preview from Everyday Astronaut.


Damp squid—shut down one second after engine ignition and scrubbed for the day. We’ll see when they’re ready to try it again.

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After what appeared to be a scrub, ISRO recycled the countdown and launched the flight some time later. They messed up the live stream, which did not begin to broadcast until after the escape system had operated and the drogue parachutes were already open, but the Economic Times put together this video of the mission. The rocket went out of sight through a cloud deck shortly after launch, so most of the powered flight is illustrated only by South Park quality animation prior to parachute deployment.