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Friday, February 29, 2008

India Boosts Funding for Human Space

India's ambitious plan to launch manned space missions received a boost on Friday with the government providing a significant increase in funding for the initiative moving from the drawing boards to the launch pad at Sriharikota. Tentatively, the lift off is slated for 2014.

A GSLV MK3 three-stage rocket, now under development, would be used for the mission. The first developmental flight of this rocket is expected to take place in early 2009.

According to space experts, with China launching manned space flights and Japan, too, planning a similar program, India couldn't lag behind since it aspires to be a major space power.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Good, the US and India have a future in space together. As China rises so will OUR friendship with India.
Indian Americans are the fastest growing EDUCATED group in the US that is also great at assimilating in to US culture. As that happens we will be drawn more closely to India.
As islam and China continue to be the main threats to the world (Russian nukes excluded) the US will seek out powerful partners to confront them.
The reasons for India to achieve a homegrown space program obvious; An independent option for space capabilities not reliant on others, a source of technological innovation, an economic engine, national pride etc.
And it’s good for the US to have a democracy with an independent space capability to rely on as a partner. It makes me sick to have to rely on Neo-fascist Russia to loft us! (I.e. using Soyuz capsules from Baikonur as a stop gap till Constellation is up and running)
If only Japan would cough up some money and shake its complacency we in the US would be in an even better position. I am guessing that Japan will accelerate its manned program as soon as India indigenously launches an astronaut. It will irk them to see themselves as behind the Indians. Hey, whatever it takes. Sure China rising is a spark, but pride too is one hell of a motivator.
There are some who say that there is no new space race. BS! If President Bush had not called for a beach head on the moon* then china would most likely have been more plodding in its goals. India would have responded but NOT as quickly as she has done.
Just as sea power made a great power in the 20th, so space power will determine the great powers of the 21st.
*The moon base once established will be the Plymouth colony of space, where the space station is the seasonal fishing village. Science fiction is now.