Prime Minister will launch Indian Space Association (ISpA) on 11th October, 2021 via video conferencing. He will also interact with representatives of the Space Industry on this landmark occasion.
Indian Space Association
The Indian Space Association is the premier industry association of space and satellite companies in India.
- It is expected to help in the growth of India’s space missions and the space industry by bringing in collaborations between the public and private sectors in the space domain.
- ISpA has among its members leading Indian and international corporations that have advanced capabilities in the space technologies sector.
- The association will engage with stakeholders across the ecosystem for the formulation of an enabling policy framework that fulfils the Government’s vision.
- It will also strive towards more global collaborations which can bring in investments and technologies to help the Indian space industry and also generate high-skilled jobs.
- ISpA will strive to be the collective voice of the industry and it will engage in policy advocacy involving all stakeholders in the Indian Space domain, including the Government and its Agencies, to make India self-reliant, technologically advanced and a leading player in the space arena.
- It will work in tandem with the Indian National Space Promotion and Authorisation Centre (IN-SPACe).
- ISpA’s tagline is “Bhumandal Se Brahmaand Tak”, meaning from “Earth to the Universe”.
- The ISpA will also play a crucial role in coordinating with the defence sector and other nodal space organisations, and this would especially be valuable for startups.
Why is the formation of Indian Space Association significant?
- Million-dollar industry: Governments across the world have poured millions of dollars to push the envelope in term of exploring the edges of the space.
- Collaborated research: With time, governments and government agencies collaborated to explore newer planets and galaxies in search of life forms that exist outside Earth.
- Private players involvement: In the recent past, private sector companies such as Elon Musk’s SpaceX, Richard Branson’s Virgin Galactic, and Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin have taken the lead in spaceflight.
- Easing workload on ISRO: Though India too has made significant strides in space exploration over time, state-run ISRO has been at the centre and front of this progress.
What does ISpA aim to achieve?
- Supplementing space research: One of the main goals of the organisation is to supplement the government’s efforts towards making India a global leader in commercial space-based excursions.
- Commercial space exploration: ISpA said it would engage with stakeholders across the ecosystem for the formulation of an enabling policy framework which fulfills the government vision of leading commercial space exploration.
- Establishing global linkages: ISpA will also work towards building global linkages for the Indian space industry to bring in critical technology and investments into the country to create more high skill jobs.
Indian Space Association Members
Founding members of the Indian Space Association are as follows:
- Bharti Airtel
- Larson & Toubro
- Nelco (Tata Group)
- Walchandnagar Industries
- Alpha Design Technologies
Other core members are Godrej, Ananth Technology Limited, Hughes India, Azista-BST Aerospace Private Limited, Centum Electronics, BEL and Maxar India.
- The first Chairperson of the ISpA is Mr. Jayant Patil, Whole time Director – Defence & Smart Technologies.
- Vice Chairperson is Mr. Rahul Vatts, Chief Regulatory Officer Bharti Airtel and Director – OneWeb India.
- Indian Space Association Director-General is Lt Gen. A.K. Bhatt (Retd).
Space reforms approach (ISpA): 4 pillars
- First, the freedom of innovation to the private sector.
- Second, the role of the government as an enabler.
- Third, preparing youth for the future.
- And fourth, to see the space sector as a resource for the progress of the common man.
Why is satellite-based Internet important in India?
- The expansion of the Internet in India is crucial to the Modi government’s dream of a digital India where a majority of government services are delivered directly to the customer.
- The government aims to connect all villages and gram panchayats with high-speed Internet over the next 1000 days through BharatNet.
- However, internet connectivity in hilly areas and far-flung places of Northeast India are still a challenge.
- To overcome this, industry experts suggest that satellite Internet will be essential for broadband inclusion in remote areas and sparsely populated locations where terrestrial networks have not reached.
- Satellite communications remain limited to use by corporates and institutions that use it for emergency use, critical trans-continental communications and for connecting to remote areas with no connectivity.