ISRO set to launch its TV channel and Public satellite launches

ISRO: The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) will have an year-long Vikram Sarabhai centenary celebration starting in August 2019 to honour the visionary scientist and its legendary founding father.

In a few months’ time, it plans to roll out a dedicated ISRO TV channel showcasing space applications, developments and science issues, targeting young viewers and people in remote areas in their language.

Indian Space Research Organisation tributes to Sarabhai start with naming the first Indian moon landing spacecraft of the Chandrayaan-2 mission ‘Vikram’. The mission is planned for early 2019. A chair each at Sarabhai’s two alma maters, Cambridge University and Gujarat University, as also at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), would be set up, apart from giving awards, scholarships and fellowships in the country and abroad, ISRO Chairman K. Sivan said at a news conference on Sunday, the 99th birthday of the legend.

The events are being taken up with an initial outlay of ₹ 50 crore.

Earlier, former Chairman of Indian Space Research Organisation K. Kasturirangan unveiled a new bust of Sarabhai at the remodelled atrium of ISRO headquarters, Antariksh Bhavan.

Dr. Sivan said 100 lectures by science luminaries would be held across the country and in association with the International Astronautical Federation, the global space networking body. Space clubs, knowledge centres and talk shows are also among the plans.

Public satellite launches

As it strengthens its public outreach, Indian Space Research Organisation will shortly start allowing the public to watch satellite launches from its Sriharikota launch centre. “We are opening our space port to visitors just as NASA (the U.S.’ National Aeronautical and Space Administration) does,” Dr. Sivan said.

Critical Technologies For Human Space Mission On Track, Says ISRO

India’s plan to put a human in space is just one decision away from being made a reality. In an exclusive interview, K Sivan, chairman of space research organisation ISRO said several of the critical technologies are already in place, including a crew module and a crew escape system. A prototype space suit has also been developed.

“ISRO is readying critical technologies for Indian human space programme. If the government wants, the Indian astronaut programme can be launched,” said Mr Sivan. Completing all arrangements, however, could take five to seven years, he said.

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