Bharatiya Antariksha Station (Indian Space Station)
Indian space station
Station statistics
Crew3 (proposed)
LaunchFirst module: 2028 (planned)[1]
Completion: 2035 (planned)[2]
Carrier rocketNGLV, LVM3
Launch padSatish Dhawan Space Centre (expected third or second launch pad)
Mission statusPlanned
Mass25 tons (baseline design)

The Indian Orbital Space Station, officially called, Bharatiya Antariksha Station (lit.'Indian Space Station'),[2] is a planned modular space station to be constructed by India and operated by the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO). The space station would weigh 20 tonnes and maintain an orbit of approximately 400 kilometres above the Earth, where astronauts could stay for 15–20 days.[3] Originally planned to be completed by 2030, it was later postponed to 2035 due to delays caused by technical issues related with the Gaganyaan crewed spaceflight mission and the COVID-19 pandemic in India.[4] As of December 2023, the first module is expected to be launched in 2028 on an LVM3 launch vehicle, with the remaining modules to be launched by 2035 on the Next Generation Launch Vehicle.[1]


In 2019, ISRO chief K. Sivan presented the features of the proposed space station for the first time, saying that the space station may weigh up to 20 tons. Three years later, in his New Year's speech delivered before retiring as chairman, Sivan stated that India's first crewed spaceflight project Gaganyaan had completed the design phase and entered into the testing phase, hinting that the organization has achieved a breakthrough in reaching the space mission milestone.[3]

In 2023, chief S. Somanath said: "Our Gaganyaan programme is towards a human space flight capability to space and once that happens, we will be able to look at space station building in subsequent modules. The timeline for this space station project spans the next 20 to 25 years. We will be definitely looking at manned exploration, a human spaceflight for a longer duration, space exercise there in our agenda".[5] Following on from the Gaganyaan project, completing the station and conducting a crewed Moon landing by the year 2040 has been set as ISRO's goal for the upcoming decade, with a whole host of new projects and undertakings to come up in support of the mission.[6]

During his visit to India in November 2023, NASA administrator Bill Nelson expressed NASA's readiness to support India's goal of building a commercial space station by 2040 if India seeks such collaboration. This potential partnership could leverage the expertise and experience of both countries, fostering innovation and advancing human presence in space between the two Artemis Accords signatories.[7][8][9] In December 2023, Somanath stated that ISRO had a 25-year roadmap extending to the year 2047. This included plans to launch the first space station module in 2028 and complete the station by 2035.[1][10]

A polymer electrolyte membrane Fuel Cell Power System (FCPS) created by the Vikram Sarabhai Space Center (VSSC) was successfully launched by ISRO on 1 January 2024, as part of the PSLV-C58 mission. Its purpose is to evaluate the possible power supply for the future Indian Space Station. The PSLV Orbital Experiment Module, or POEM-3, will be used for technological validation. Additionally, new silicon-based high-power energy cells will be tested by VSSC.[11][12]

The successful test of FCPS, a 100 Watt payload, onboard POEM-3 was reported by ISRO on 2 January 2024. Under high pressure, a chemical reaction was sparked using oxygen and hydrogen, when moved through a fuel cell assembly. It assisted in producing 180 Watt electricity and clean drinking water as byproduct. The complete system functioned as planned in radiation-filled, temperature-extreme, and weightless environment.

The next phase will be the construction of a 100 Kilowatt system. Fuel cells have already been constructed by ISRO and provided to other organizations for testing. The International Space Station (ISS) is already using this technology, but ISRO is working to broaden its application. On board POEM-3, the 10 Ampere-hour high-power energy cells based on silicongraphite anode were also tested. These lithium-ion batteries are lightweight, have a compact design, and an improved energy density thanks to the silicon-graphite content.[13][14] The energy cells have crimped sealing based design which reduces the hardware and fabrication costs. It is expected to save 35-40% of battery mass on future space missions.[15]

The chairman of ISRO, S. Somanath revealed that he had been reviewing the designs of the Indian Space Station when speaking with media during India International Science Festival 2024. Developmental tests for the space station could begin from 2025. ISRO is planning to establish a basic, preliminary model of the space station in 2028 before building the larger, final version in 2035. The space agency is in discussions with industry to produce, evaluate, and introduce the first module by 2028.[16][17]


BAS is currently in the conceptualisation phase. ISRO is studying the overall architecture, including the number and types of modules and docking ports required for the project. The financial aspects are yet to be analysed.[18][19][20]

The Bharatiya Antariksha Station will have a basic design including a crew command module, a habitat module, a propulsion module and docking ports. The entire capsule is estimated to have a mass of around 25 tonnes, which will be increased in the future depending on the expansion of the station.[16][17] The establishment of the Bharatiya Antariksha Station is poised to enhance India's presence in space research and exploration significantly as it will provide a unique platform for conducting scientific experiments in microgravity and foster advancements in space technology, potentially leading to economic activities based on lunar resources 2047.

According to ISRO Chairman S Somanath, the Indian Space Station is in the final stages of design as of February 2024. After the first part of the project is launched successfully in 2028, humans may be sent to the station. The electronics for the station will be produced at the U R Rao Satellite Centre (URSC) in Bengaluru, while Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre (VSSC) will help in hardware development.[21]

Two to four astronauts could stay in space on the Bharatiya Antariksh Station. The crew module and rocket that will transport humans to and from the space station will dock at one end of the station. India is creating a unique docking port that will work with the International Space Station's docking port (ISS). At least four pairs of solar panels and four distinct modules are possible for the Indian space station once it is finished. In case of an emergency, it will also feature a permanently docked safety crew module escape system. According to the existing blueprints, the Bharatiya Antariksh Station would be powered by two sizable solar panels in the initial phase.[22]

See also


  1. ^ a b c "First module of Indian space station to launch by 2028: ISRO chief". The Indian Express. Ahmedabad. 23 December 2023. Archived from the original on 2 January 2024. Retrieved 27 December 2023.
  2. ^ a b "Prime Minister reviews readiness of Gaganyaan Mission" (Press release). Press Information Bureau. 17 October 2023. Archived from the original on 5 December 2023. Retrieved 27 December 2023.
  3. ^ a b Tiwari, Sakshi (17 January 2022). "India's Space Station: As China Set To Become The Only Country With A Space Station, Will ISRO Hit Its 2030 Deadline?". Eurasian Times. Archived from the original on 13 December 2023. Retrieved 9 November 2022.
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  6. ^ Saxena, Ragini (17 October 2023). "India Plans to Launch Its First Crewed Moon Mission by 2040". Bloomberg News. Archived from the original on 17 October 2023. Retrieved 18 October 2023.
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  12. ^ Kumar, Chethan (29 December 2023). "Isro to begin New Year with XPoSat launch; 10 other payloads to go on POEM". The Times of India. ISSN 0971-8257. Archived from the original on 11 January 2024. Retrieved 31 December 2023.
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  14. ^ "ISRO successfully tests Polymer Electrolyte Membrane Fuel Cell on PSLV-C58's orbital platform POEM3". The Hindu. 2 January 2024. ISSN 0971-751X. Archived from the original on 3 January 2024. Retrieved 6 January 2024.
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  20. ^ Tripathi, Sibu Kumar (7 February 2024). "Bharatiya Antariksh Station to be assembled in multiple phases by Isro". India Today. Archived from the original on 13 February 2024. Retrieved 7 February 2024.
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  22. ^ Bagla, Pallava (4 March 2024). "ISRO Starts Work On India's Maiden Space Station, Here's How It May Look". Retrieved 7 March 2024.