The Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle Mark III (GSLV-III) is a three-stage, medium-lift launch vehicle developed by the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO). It is designed to launch satellites into geostationary orbit and is intended as a launch vehicle for missions under the Indian Human Spaceflight Programme.

India seems to seriously want to take up the battle with the world’s leading space nations and now planning to send a manned spacecraft to space in 2022.

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced Wednesday in a speech to the nation, “India will send into space–a man or a woman–by 2022, before that if possible,” Modi said in a marathon address at the Red Fort in New Delhi for the country’s Independence Day.

Speaking to Indian media this week, Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) head K. Sivan said the organization was inching closer to sending an astronaut to space. “We have developed lot of technology, a lot of critical technology … required for human space program,” he said.

The Indian Space Agency, the so-called Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) has since announced more detailed plans for a manned space mission. The mission called “Gaganyaan” will send Indian astronauts in a spacecraft developed in India. If successful, India would be the fourth country in the world to conduct a manned space mission, after the US, China and Russia.

In 2022, ISRO plans to send three Indian astronauts to space using the country’s most powerful rocket Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle Mark III (GSLV MK III). Once in space, the idea is that the three will spend seven days in orbit and then return.

India has allocated 90 billion rupees, equivalent to approximately 1.3 billion US dollar, to realize “Mission Gaganyaa”.

India’s space programme was established in 1962 and India is now stepping up its rivalry with China, the country has invested heavily in its space programme in the past decade.

Chandrayaan-1, launched in 2008, orbited the moon and sent a probe to the surface which made a controlled crash landing. And in September 2014, ISRO successfully guided a spacecraft into orbit around Mars, just the fourth space programme in the world to do so.

ISRO is now aiming to send an unmanned mission to the moon in January 2019. The Chandrayaan-2 orbiter will aim to put a craft with a rover onto the moon’s surface to collect data. Design changes to the craft forced the space body to push the launch back from this year.

At $74 million, Delhi’s Mars Orbiter Mission came in at a fraction of the $671 million price tag for NASA’s MAVEN mission to Mars in the same year. Three years later, India successfully launched 104 micro-satellites from a single rocket, propelling the Asian space race.