After going gaga over China, SpaceX’s CEO Elon Musk has now congratulated India on successfully conducting the third long-duration “hot test” of Vikas engine, a crucial part of the ambitious Gaganyaan mission to take Indians to space in an Indian vehicle. He cheered for ISRO on Twitter and added India’s flag emoticon.
As SpaceX eyes India big leap, the question arises whether we can trust Elon Musk, leading to an ‘ally’ vs ‘competitor’ debate. Do we really Elon or he needs us more? One must not forget Elon Musk praised China’s economic achievements on CPC’s centenary celebrations in Beijing on July 1, even as tensions between India and China continue to be at its peak. “The economic prosperity that China has achieved is truly amazing, especially in infrastructure! I encourage people to visit and see for themselves,” he wrote.
The ISRO said on Wednesday that it tested the human rated GSLV vehicle for engine qualification requirements for the manned mission and it was successful. This was the final testing of one of the three stages of the launch vehicle which will be used in the mission to carry humans to Space. It further stated that the engine was fired for duration of 240 seconds at the space agency’s Propulsion Complex in Tamil Nadu’s Mahendragiri.
Meanwhile, SpaceX is planning to partner with local companies to manufacture satellite communications equipment in India. It is also planning to launch its high-speed Starlink satellite broadband services in India this year.