ISRO keen only on R&D; eyes industry consortia for production

Last Updated: Wednesday, September 12, 2012 - 17:09

Bangalore: Indian Space Research Organisation wants to focus mainly on cutting edge research and development activity and realise space missions through industry consortia, its Chairman K Radhakrishnan indicated today.
Speaking at Bangalore Space Expo (BSX) 2012, he said in the sectors of launch vehicles and communication satellites, the space agency was trying to realise those missions through a consortia approach.

"It benefits all of us in several ways", he said adding, while demand would be met by such an aproach, ISRO manpower could focus on challenging futuristic activity. "It`s essential that we get operational activities moved into production regime.

"If you want leadership to be sustained in the global context, we need high-end research and development activity to be done, technology leadership in a few niche areas", Radhakrishnan, also the Space Commission Chairman and Department of Space Secretary, said.

Bangalore-headquartered ISRO has done an exercise on "what could be the scenario for the future" and "it`s clear that operational launch vehicles -- currently the PSLV and in future the GSLV or GSLV-Mk III could be produced by the Indian industry".

Similar is the case with communication satellite systems.

Stressing the need for industry consortia to realise space missions, Radhakrishnan suggested studying space industry models in US and Europe. He noted that European launch services provider Arianespace is a consortium of more than 20 countries, and a large number of industries work with US space agency NASA. "We have to work out mechanisms".

Similarly, India needs to work out a model to address its own requirements, the ISRO chief said, adding, he expects Indian space industry to emerge as "scaled-down version" of the global space industry in two years.

Radhakrishnan also expects emergence of 3-4 industry consortia in the country in the next two years -- coming together of those making raw materials, components, sub-systems assembly and other space systems as also rocket architects.

Noting that almost 80 per cent of value addition was done in ISRO`s main launch vehicle PSLV today by the domestic industry, he said the agency was now looking for next level of partnership with the industry.

Radhakrishnan urged the industry to discuss various models, including joint ventures, partnerships, investment pattern, technology and manpower and issues on shared responsibility and risk in space ventures.


First Published: Wednesday, September 12, 2012 - 17:09

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