India, US discuss sharing satellite data for maritime surveillance

India, US discuss sharing satellite data for maritime surveillance

 India and the United States may soon set up a bilateral arrangement for sharing data for monitoring movements of satellites, averting collisions and detecting potential threats to space and ground assets of both nations.

Officials of US and India met in New Delhi this week to discuss about a proposed bilateral arrangement for Space Situational Awareness (SSA)–a programme for monitoring space environment and track potential hazards and security threats. They also explored the possibilities of another bilateral mechanism for sharing data from each other’s satellites for Maritime Domain Awareness (MDA).

“One potential area we are continuing to look at is cooperation on SSA and collision avoidance,” Frank A Rose, Assistant Secretary in charge of Bureau of Arms Control, Verification and Co mpliance in US State Department, said in New Delhi. He recently led the American Government’s delegation in the second Space Security Dialogue with India.

New Delhi’s delegation was led by Amandeep Singh Gill, Joint Secretary (Disarmament and International Security) in the Ministry of External Affairs of Government of India.

Rose said that the SSA programme could contribute to a more comprehensive picture of what was transpiring in space and ensure the safety, sustainability, stability, and security of the space environment.

The SSA’s space weather component includes monitoring the sun, solar wind, and magnetosphere, ionosphere and thermosphere of earth to assess effects on space or and ground assets or and implications on human health. The programme has another component for monitoring near-earth objects like asteroids and comets, which can potentially impact earth. Yet another component of the programme–Space Surveillance and Tracking–monitors active and inactive satellites and space debris.


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