February 15th, this year witnessed something remarkable for the country’s space history to follow. ISRO launched its Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle at Sriharikota, which put a record 104 satellites from a single rocket into orbit.
Following the events of ISRO’s record satellite launch, Mr. A.S. Kiran Kumar Rao, the Chairman for ISRO spoke to the media on February 20th. He shared his views on India’s capability to build a space station, and stressed on the significance of long-term approach and ambitious planning for the same. Kiran remarks, “We will give this project a go, the very day the country makes this decision. We are just need to see a drawn policy, besides the necessary funds and time for the same.”
Kumar mentioned this during his visit to Indore to attend the foundation day ceremony of the Raja Ramanna Center for Advanced Technology (RRCAT). He pointed India’s focus on realizing immediate benefits of manned space missions as one of the prime reasons why the landscape hasn’t witnessed significant investments towards establishing a space station. “The need is to promote long-term thinking to set up a space station,” adds Kiran.
A large number of satellites are needed to properly survey land and weather conditions, and to enhance communication networks. This could only be possible if the number of satellite launches is proliferated. India must focus on improving the basic infrastructure and reducing the equipment costs. ISRO is currently extending partnerships with the industry to enhance India’s satellite launching capability.
Around the world, the count for enterprises manufacturing small satellites is on the rise. However, these companies fail to foster the ability to launch satellites. The arena proposes immense potential for the country to tap into and facilitate satellite launches.