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Industry should be 'risk-sharing partner' in Indian space programme

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Dr. Radhakrishnan addressing BSX-2010 on Wednesday.

BANGALORE (BNS): The Indian industry should join hands with the country’s space sector and become a “risk-sharing partner” in its endeavours, Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) Chief K Radhakrishnan has said.

“We want the industry to come up as a risk-sharing partner in (Indian) space programmes. This would strengthen ISRO as well as the industry as it will be a mutually beneficial activity,” Radhakrishnan said while delivering his key-note address on the opening day of Bengaluru Space Expo-2010 here on Wednesday.

Throwing light on the industry’s participation in Indian space programme, he said that its active involvement began in the 1970s which was further extended to the design and development of launch vehicles, electronic systems and other space components.

“Today, around 500 firms – large, medium and small – are involved in the country’s space programme. Nearly 60 per cent of our purchases are being made from these private firms,” the ISRO Chief said.

As India’s future areas of activity would be focused on orbiting a constellation of communication, navigation and science satellites while enhancing and maintaining their life-span, and development of new launch vehicles to carry out these missions, “this would provide a path (of huge opportunities) for the private sector”, Radhakrishnan said.

Elaborating further on such public-private cooperation, Managing Director of Antrix Corporation K R Sridhara Murthi said that there was a great demand for low-cost solutions to tap the growing space market.

“Space as an exclusive sector is fast fading away as it is contributing to the social, scientific, economic and other allied sectors at large. Exploring mutually profitable cooperation in this direction would be of great help,” he said.

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