Space: 'Focus will be on resources'

Delivering the “Subroto Mukherjee Memorial Oration” on “Space travel - where do we go from here?” at the Golden Jubilee Conference of the Indian Society of Aerospace Medicine on Friday, Sharma said unlike research, which had been the focus of space activity so far, space programmes will now concentrate on exploitation of resources that may be available on the moon and beyond.

In the event of long-duration hauls becoming regular in the future, new challenges would crop up and may have to be addressed, said Sharma who travelled to space in April 1984.
He also raised questions over the earth’s ability to sustain human life, given its shrinking resources.

“We need to have a redundancy plan, a backup for human race,” he said.

There could be a need to simultaneously commence programmes aimed at colonisation of the moon and deep space exploration with long-duration flights to Mars and beyond. A lunar outpost would have to be set up for the purpose, he said.

Satellite launch

The Indian Space Research Organisation will launch Resourcesat-2 advanced remote sensing satellite on board home-made PSLV rocket in January, adds PTI from Bangalore.

The Bangalore-headquartered space agency held a mission readiness review in the Sriharikota spaceport in Andhra Pradesh on Friday. Resourcesat-2 is a follow on mission to Resourcesat-1 to provide data continuity. Resourcesat-1, launched in October 2003, has outlived its designed mission life of five years.

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