ISRO Missions and Discoveries

ISRO pushing Venus Mission ‘Shukrayaan’ to 2031


From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level : Shukrayaan I

Mains level : Not Much


ISRO said that it is yet to receive approval from the Indian government for the Venus mission and that the mission could as a result be postponed to 2031.

Shukrayaan I: Venus Orbiter Mission

  • Shukrayaan-I is a planned orbiter to Venus by the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) to study the surface and atmosphere of Venus.
  • The idea was born in 2012; five years later, ISRO commenced preliminary studies after the Department of Space received a 23% hike in the 2017-2018 budget.
  • The orbiter, depending on its final configuration, would have a science payload capability of approximately 100 kilograms (220 lb) with 500 W available power.
  • The launch will involve GSLV Mark II.

Expected launch

  • ISRO had originally hoped to launch Shukrayaan I in mid-2023 but cited the pandemic when it pushed the date to December 2024.
  • Optimal launch windows from Earth to Venus occur once around every 19 months.
  • This is why ISRO has ‘backup’ launch dates in 2026 and 2028 should it miss the 2024 opportunity.
  • But even more optimal windows, which further reduce the amount of fuel required at liftoff, come around every eight years.

Other missions to Venus

  • The US and the European space agencies have Venus missions planned for 2031 — referring to VERITAS and EnVision, respectively.


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