Vyommitra, a combination of two Sanskrit words Vyoma (Space) and Mitra (Friend), was unveiled at the inaugural session of the Human Spaceflight and Exploration — Present Challenges and Future Trends in Bengaluru (Bangalore)

By Ian Horswill


Posted on January 23, 2020

Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) is to send a female robot, named Vyommitra, into orbit ahead of India’s first human space flight 12 months later.

Vyommitra, a half-robot as she does not have legs, will fly in an unmanned Gaganyaan, a spacecraft, in December and June 2021.

Vyommitra, a combination of two Sanskrit words Vyoma (Space) and Mitra (Friend), was unveiled at the inaugural session of the Human Spaceflight and Exploration — Present Challenges and Future Trends in Bengaluru (Bangalore), Tribune reported

“Hello everyone. I am Vyommitra, the prototype of the half-humanoid, been made for the first unmanned Gaganyaan mission,” she said.

Explaining her role in the forthcoming mission, Vyommitra said, “I can monitor through module parameters, alert you and perform life support operations. I can perform activities like switch panel operations ….”

ISRO chairman Kailasavadivoo Sivan said Vyommitra will simulate human functions in space and also interact with the environment control life support system.

“It will be simulating exactly the human functions there (in space). It will check whether the system is right. This will be very useful to simulate, as if a human is flying.”

ISRO will undertake two unmanned missions to space in December 2020 and June 2021, with Vyommitra on board, before the launch of India’s maiden human spaceflight venture Gaganyaan in December 2021.

“We are on schedule (regarding Gaganyaan). We are going to do lots of demonstration tests this year,” said Sivan. “This year end we will send our unmanned mission and the half-humanoid you have seen today is going to fly in it.”

Vyommitra is able to replicate the human simulation system and she will be monitored by the ISRO.

“The humanoid project has almost completed,” said Sivan.

India looked to be the fourth country to land on the moon in September last year when the ISRO spaceship Chandrayaan-2’s lunar lander was lost two kilometres from the moon’s surface. The lander was found on the moon.