ISRO’s ‘Spacecraft Docking & Berthing’ Eyes On Putting Human In Orbit

ISRO Sattellite

The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) is swiftly moving towards a golden future and has been adding new and remarkable feathers to its cap. It is hardly two days to announce by India’s Prime Minister, Mr Narendra Modi about ISRO’s plan to launch the historic South Asia Satellite on 5th may for offering seven SAARC countries high-end telecommunication and broadcasting applications, and now The Department of Space, under Indian Government has come up with another ambitious plan of the agency – to develop technology that will enable two separate spaceships to connect in orbit and also reassign material including human being between them. With the new announcement, the Bengaluru-headquartered agency is eyeing n putting the human being in the space.

Described in the technical term as “Spacecraft Docking & Berthing”, the new mission will not only revolutionise the existing technology of the Indian Space Research Organisation but also will revitalise the global space industry, by paving new paths for advanced deep space exploration programs and manned missions.

This new technology, developed by ISRO will enable the agency to connect two space vehicles in the orbit and shipping material between them to space. The mission already has been sanctioned by the Department Of Space with a funding of Rs 10 crore. The technology once developed entirely, will eventually allow ISRO to conduct manned missions to space. However, the immediate goal of the program is to facilitate the replenishing of spacecraft to confer them an extended existence and transport other vital systems from earth to orbit more efficiently.

T K Anuradha, a senior scientist at ISRO had has confirmed that the proposals and experiments for this revolutionary mission are in progress at ISRO’s Bengaluru-based Space Application Centre (ISAC) since 2016 and recently has been approved by the Department of Space. ISRO’s team has already completed some crucial ground simulations for the mission, and soon it will be prepared thoroughly for takeoff, added Anuradha. As planned by ISRO, the launch of the two small spacecraft will soon be conducted for testing the competence of the technology in space.

“India with its premium space agency – ISRO is already operating a huge constellation of spacecraft and satellites, and the introduction of this technology will enable the country to amplify the lives of those satellites by refuelling them. Moreover, it will also trim down the space debris”, added T K Anuradha.

Once developed and put in operational, the satellite will be used for enhancing the lifespan of other satellites by refuelling them. Whenever a satellite is decommissioned, the new technology will be used to expand its existence. The human space program is not the immediate goal of the agency and the technology, but at some point of time, this particular technology will help the agency to put human beings in orbit. Former chairman of ISRO and the current chairperson of ISRO’s Advisory Committee – U R Rao has confirmed that the eventual aim of this ground-breaking docking system is to transmit and return with people from space.


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