ISRO can focus more on its own R&D as India sets up new board to govern private participation in the space sector

ISRO can focus more on its own R&D as India sets up new board to govern private participation in the space sector
Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO)IANS
  • India’s Union Cabinet is setting up the Indian Space Promotion and Authorisation Centre (IN-SPACe) to govern the participation of private players in the space sector.
  • Minister of Space and Atomic Energy, Jitendra Singh announced that the board will be in charge or promoting and guiding the space activities of the private industry.
  • He also said that this will free up the Indian Space Research Organisation to focus more on its own research and development activities.
The Union Cabinet has announced a new board, the Indian National Space Promotion and Authorisation Centre (IN-SPACe) to provide a level playing field for private companies in the country’s space sector. According to the Minister of Space and Atomic Energy, Jitendra Singh, the board will be in charge or promoting and guiding the space activities of the private industry.

“IN-SPACE’s structure and other details will be worked out in the coming days,” he said during the virtual meeting. The government hopes that setting up an independent board will also allow the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) to focus more on research and development, new technology, space exploration and human spaceflight.
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According to Singh, some of the planetary exploration missions will also be opened up to the private sector through an ‘announcement of opportunity’ mechanism.

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The move comes as a way to bolster the earlier announcement by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on May 16 where she said the Indian Space Research Organisation’s (ISRO) testing facilities and data will be opened up for private players.

She also said that future projects for planetary exploration and outer space travel will be opened to the private sector.

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“India today is a frontline space-faring nation, but somewhere, the need was felt to change the way we’ve been working in the past 70 years,” said Singh while pointing that not everyone may understand the implications, but that it’s a long term reform.
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“India’s space agency was working very secretly and its capability was limited to only a handful of people working at ISRO. Now human resources and expertise has improved,” he added.

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