The Indian Space Research Organisation is racing against time to launch the first uncrewed mission in December, as part of the human spaceflight programme 'Gaganyaan', due to the adverse impact of the Covid-19-induced lockdowns that has disrupted hardware delivery schedules.
As part of the mandate of Gaganyaan, two uncrewed flights are planned to test the end-to-end capacity for the manned mission.
Officials of the Bengaluru-headquartered space agency said the first and second waves of the pandemic have "severely affected" the Gaganyaan programme.
Hardware elements for the mission is fabricated by the industry, and lockdowns in different parts of the country at different periods have adversely impacted delivery schedules.
"Design, analysis and documentation are done by ISRO while hardware for Gaganyaan is fabricated and supplied by hundreds of industries across the country", an ISRO official told PTI.
The objective of the Gaganyaan programme is to demonstrate the capability to send humans to low earth orbit on board an Indian launch vehicle and bring them back to earth safely.
ISRO's heavy-lift launcher GSLV Mk III has been identified for the mission.