fbpx Skip to content

Gaganyaan mission: ISRO completes human rating of CE20 cryogenic engine


Prelims: Science & Tech (Space Missions), Gaganyaan Mission, ISRO, CE20 Cryogenic Engine, Human Ratings

Mains: General Studies-III  Awareness in the fields of IT, Space, Computers, Robotics, Nano-technology, Bio-technology and issues relating to Intellectual Property Rights.

Why in the News ?

Recently, the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) has successfully completed the human rating of its CE20 cryogenic engine. It marks a significant milestone in India’s Gaganyaan mission to send humans into space. 

Source: TH 

Key Facts 🗝️

CE20 Cryogenic Engine:

  • It is the first Indian cryogenic engine to feature a gas-generator cycle.

📌 FYI on Prelims:

Gaganyaan Mission

  • Gaganyaan is a mission by the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO).
  • Under the Gaganyaan schedule:
    • Three flights will be sent into orbit.
    • There will be two unmanned flights and one human spaceflight.
  • The Gaganyaan system module, called the Orbital Module will have three Indian astronauts, including a woman.
  • It will circle Earth at a low-earth-orbit at an altitude of 300-400 km from earth for 5-7 days.
  • Payloads: The payload will consist of:
    • Crew module – spacecraft carrying human beings.
    • Service module – powered by two liquid propellant engines.
  • Launch:
    • GSLV Mk III also called the LVM-3 (Launch Vehicle Mark-3,) the three-stage heavy lift launch vehicle, will be used to launch Gaganyaan as it has the necessary payload capability.
  • Significance:
    • It will help in enhancement of science and technology levels in the country and help inspire youth.
    • It will help in improvement of industrial growth.
    • Recently, the Government has announced a new organisation, IN-SPACe, part of reforms to increase private participation in the space sector
    • It will help in development of technology for social benefits.
    • It will help in improving international collaboration.
    • One International Space Station (ISS) put up by multiple countries may not be enough. Regional ecosystems will be needed and Gaganyaan will focus on regional needs: food, water and energy security.
Gaganyaan-Mission "Manned-Mission"


  • CE20 Cryogenic engine
    • It has been designed and developed by the Liquid Propulsion Systems Centre (LPSC), a subsidiary of ISRO.
    • It will power the Cryogenic Upper Stage of the LVM3 launch vehicle for the Chandrayaan-3 mission.
    • It is one of the most powerful upper-stage cryogenic engines in the world.
    • This engine develops a nominal thrust of 186.36 kN in vacuum.
  • Cryogenic stage
    • The cryogenic stage is technically a very complex system due to its use of propellants at extremely low temperatures and the associated thermal and structural problems.
    • It uses liquid fuels that are cooled to very low temperatures.
    • A Cryogenic rocket stage is more efficient and provides more thrust for every kilogram of propellant it burns compared to solid and earth-storable liquid propellant rocket stages.
  • Human rating
    • Process of certifying a spacecraft or its parts to meet safety standards for human space travel.
    • For the CE20 cryogenic engine, being human-rated means that it has been extensively tested and has been confirmed safe and reliable for crewed space missions like India’s Gaganyaan.
    • ISRO has also completed acceptance tests for the flight engine selected for the first unmanned Gaganyaan mission.


Prelims: PYQ/FAQ

Q. With reference to India’s satellite launch vehicles, consider the following statements: (2018)

  1. PSLVs launch the satellites useful for Earth resources monitoring whereas GSLVs are designed mainly to launch communication satellites.
  2. Satellites launched by PSLV appear to remain permanently fixed in the same position in the sky, as viewed from a particular location on Earth.
  3. GSLV Mk III is a four-staged launch vehicle with the first and third stages using solid rocket motors; and the second and fourth stages using liquid rocket engines.

Which of the statements given above is/are correct?

A) 1 only
B) 2 and 3
C) 1 and 2 
D) 3 only

Ans: a. 1 only


  • PSLV is the third generation launch vehicle of India. It is the first Indian launch vehicle to be equipped with liquid stages. It is used mainly for delivering various satellites in Low Earth Orbits, particularly the Indian Remote Sensing series of satellites. It can take up to 1,750 kg of payload to Sun-Synchronous Polar Orbits of 600 km altitude.
  • GSLV is designed mainly to deliver Indian National Satellite System, or INSAT, which is a series of multipurpose geo-stationary satellites launched by ISRO to fulfil the needs of telecommunications, broadcasting, meteorology, and search and rescue operations. It places satellites to the highly elliptical Geosynchronous Transfer Orbit (GTO). 
  • The satellites in the geosynchronous orbits appear to remain permanently fixed in the same position in the sky. 

More Link

What's New


Copyright © 2023 UPSC Padhai. All Rights Reserved.