Will this year’s budget accommodate space amid the coronavirus pandemic?

India developed the Indian National Space, Promotion & Authorisation Centre (IN-SPACe) to motivate the private space industry to expand in the country. This government is very expectant of the space industry and is upgrading it through the policies and subsidies intended to lure investors into the business. The Prime Minister of the country has vowed in many public addresses to ensure that space technology scales up to put the country among the explorers of this exciting sector. Moreover, his government authorized mega amendments in the space sector in the coronavirus pandemic period to encourage the businesses’ involvement in this sector in diverse space operations. It also agreed to the utilization of the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) facilities by the private industry to advance their operations and foothold in the space navigation.

The ISRO deals with over 500 companies in its space exploration. This agency wants to involve itself in the activities that the private space sector is doing like the provision of fabrication materials and services for electronic, mechanical and system advancement. For example, the Centre appropriated Rs 13,479 crore to facilitate the growth of the local space technology and to spearhead the country to advanced space exploits. The ISRO is currently promoting three projects which it hopes can be successful by the end of the first half of this decade. These projects are the Shukrayaan mission, the Gaganyaan mission, and the Mangalyaan-2.

The three mission have unique objectives that they will be fulfilling. The Gaganyaan mission will be India’s first space mission deploying its astronauts to space. This mission is the most valuable one and has received Rs 1,200 crore from the projected Rs 4,256.78 crore that it was to receive in the Budgetary Approximations. Experts tried to value the cost of the Gaganyaan mission sending astronauts to space and returning them to Earth. The total sum needed for the mission clocked Rs 10,000 crore in 2018 and will likely increase with the new changes that the technicians and engineers come up with in their reviews.

On the other hand, the Mangalyaan 2 mission or the Mars Orbiter Mission 2 will be happening next year. This mission will involve the utilization of the aerobraking technology for the spacecraft to come close to Mars for scientific purposes. Another crucial mission planned by the ISRO within this period will be the Aditya-L1 mission that will study the Sun’s radiations. Therefore, the space industry will require inclusion in the budget if the government hopes to attain its ambitious space objectives.

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