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May 25, 2024

NASA to Soon Provide Advanced Training to Indian Astronauts: Ambassador Garcetti

NASA is set to deliver advanced training to Indian astronauts, aiming to launch a joint mission to the International Space Station (ISS). This announcement was made by US Ambassador to India, Eric Garcetti, at the “US-India Commercial Space Conference: Unlocking Opportunities for US & Indian Space Startups,” hosted by the US-India Business Council (USIBC) and the US Commercial Service (USCS) in Bangalore.

Garcetti highlighted that NASA’s collaboration with the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) is expected to advance significantly, possibly as early as this year. A notable upcoming project is the launch of the NISAR satellite from ISRO’s Satish Dhawan Space Center. This satellite will monitor various Earth resources, including ecosystems, the Earth’s surface, natural hazards, sea level rise, and the cryosphere.

“Our leaders’ recent visit solidified promises for this collaboration, and soon, the NISAR satellite will be launched, enhancing our monitoring capabilities of Earth’s vital signs,” Garcetti stated. “In our pursuit of peace and the peaceful use of space, the Artemis Accord exemplifies our commitment. Today’s conference underscores the potential for prosperity and job creation, driven by space startups in both nations.”

The conference saw participation from senior officials of the US and Indian governments, including ISRO Chairman Dr. S. Somanath, representatives from NASA, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), and leaders from the commercial space industry, venture capitalists, and market analysts.

Dr. Somanath commended the visionary leadership in both countries for engaging in accords like Artemis, which envision the moon as a sustainable habitat for future collaborative efforts. “The strengthening ties between Indian and US partners in critical technologies, especially in the space sector, are promising. This engagement opens up new opportunities for industries and businesses from both nations,” Somanath remarked.

Expressing optimism about US-India space collaboration, USIBC President Atul Keshap described the current developments as a new chapter in the partnership. “This week has been particularly productive, with USIBC and USCS advocating for two significant iCET space deliverables. The conference highlights our nations’ deepening synergy in pioneering space exploration and innovation,” Keshap said.

USIBC Managing Director Alexander Slater emphasized the importance of strategic partnerships in driving innovation and advancing the space industry. “This conference is a testament to USIBC’s ongoing commitment to fostering bilateral cooperation. It builds on our work from February’s INDUS-X event in New Delhi, promoting opportunities for innovation in defense technologies,” Slater noted.

The event underscored the shared goals of the US and India in expanding the frontiers of space exploration. Through strategic alliances and collaborative efforts, both nations are poised to achieve remarkable milestones, pushing the boundaries of what is possible in space exploration.

In conclusion, the “US-India Commercial Space Conference” highlighted the significant strides being made in US-India space collaboration. The advanced training of Indian astronauts by NASA, the imminent launch of the NISAR satellite, and the strategic partnerships being formed between the two nations mark a promising future for space exploration and innovation. This cooperation not only fosters economic growth and job creation but also strengthens the technological leadership of both democracies in the rapidly evolving space industry.

Jhumpa Lahiri

Jhumpa Lahiri

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