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Collaboration for Mars exploration



Collaboration for Mars exploration 

ISRO-NASA Mars Working Group (INMWG) has been formed, under the US-India Civil Space Joint Working Group. Under INMWG, ISRO and NASA are having discussions on the possibility of co-operations in Mars Science and exploration. 


The Charter for the ISRO-NASA Mars Working Group was signed during September 2014. This group will seek to identify, define and implement those scientific, programmatic, and technological goals that ISRO and NASA have in common in regard to the exploration of Mars. This working group will explore possibilities for enhanced cooperation between the two countries in the exploration of Mars. 

This information was provided by the Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) Development of North-Eastern Region (DoNER), MoS PMO, Personnel, Public Grievances & Pensions, Atomic Energy and Space, Dr Jitendra Singh in a reply to an unstarred question in Lok Sabha today. 

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Space technology for public welfare 

In India, space technology is being primarily used as a tool to enable variety of public services by various Central Ministries/Departments, State Governments, Public & Private enterprises. A few of such public services include – (i) Television, Direct-To-Home (DTH) & Radio broadcasting, (ii) Telecommunication, (iii) Weather forecasting and Disaster early warning for Cyclone & Tsunami, (iv) Emergency Communication during disaster events, (v) Agriculture and fishing zone advisories, (vi) Tele-education and Tele-medicine services. Also, many governmental programmes / schemes utilising space technology as input offer direct / indirect benefits to public. A few of these include – Ground Water Prospect zones, watershed development, urban & rural infrastructure planning and development, rural connectivity etc. 

The roadmap includes providing the continuity of space technology tools for the existing public service with improved technological capabilities and development of technology for enabling newer services viz. location based services, geospatial services for ease of doing business and synergy of satellite communication, navigation & earth observation in planning, monitoring and evaluation of developmental activities in various sectors. 

To enable the above activities, ISRO plans to realise communication satellites and earth observation satellites, associated ground segments and development of application tools/techniques. The funds for the above are the integral part of the annual plan of the department. 

This information was provided by the Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) Development of North-Eastern Region (DoNER), MoS PMO, Personnel, Public Grievances & Pensions, Atomic Energy and Space, Dr Jitendra Singh in a reply to an unstarred question in Lok Sabha today. 

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Good Governance 

A one day National Meet on “Promoting Space Technology based tools and Applications in Governance & Development” was organized on September 07, 2015 in New Delhi with the participation of Central Ministries/Departments and State Governments. Secretaries of 58 Ministries/ Departments have presented the action plans jointly prepared with Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) to enhance functional effectiveness, facilitate planning and decision making.

While addressing during the special session, the Prime Minister emphasized on the need for new initiatives for governance and development, using space technology applications.

Space technology is being used by various Ministries/Departments in planning, monitoring and evaluation of developmental activities in various sectors, which include agriculture, forestry & environment, water resources, urban planning, infrastructure development, asset mapping, mineral prospecting, ocean resources, meteorology, satellite communication, location based services, Tele-education, Tele-medicine and disaster management support.  Some of the important applications being carried out by the Ministries/Departments are given below:

Ministry/ Department
Application
M/o Agriculture & Farmers Welfare
      Crop Acreage Estimation & Production Forecasting
      Agricultural Drought Assessment
      Inventory and Management of Horticulture crops
M/o Environment Forests & Climate Change
      Biennial Forest Cover Mapping
      Monitoring Snow & Glaciers  and Snow-Melt Runoff in Himalayan Region
      Coastal Zone Monitoring
M/o Water Resources, River Development & Ganga Rejuvenation
      Command Area Development and Assessment of Irrigation Potential
      Repair, Renovation and Restoration of Water Bodies
      Reservoir sedimentation assessment
M/o Urban Development
      National Urban Information System
      Enabling Master plan preparation for 500 cities / towns
M/o Culture
      Inventory and site management plans for 4000 heritage enabling ease of business
M/o Drinking Water and Sanitation
      Ground Water Prospects Zones and Suitable sites for constructing recharge structures
M/o Civil Aviation
      Dedicated Satellite Communication Network (DSCN), linking several operational airports for exchange of voice and data for various services
      GAGAN (GPS Aided GEO Augmented Navigation) for safety of life applications and en-route navigation
D/o Post
      Geo-tagging of post offices
      Postman beat maps
M/o Earth Sciences
      Space derived inputs for operational weather forecast, tropical cyclone tracking & Ocean State Forecast
      Potential Fishing Zone Advisory
M/o Petroleum & Natural Gas
      Planning pipeline corridor
M/o Rural Development
      Wasteland change monitoring
      Monitoring & Evaluation of Watershed development
M/o Information and Broadcasting
      Satellite based communication services for broadcasting
M/o Power
      Environmental impact assessment of Power projects
M/o Panchayati Raj
      Space Based Information Support for Decentralized Planning at Panchayat level
      SATCOM centres at every block for training.
M/o Tribal Affairs
      Potential Pond Identification for developing fish culture in village ponds.
      Identifying sites for new ponds for harvesting runoff
D/o Health & Family Welfare
      Telemedicine Centres at pilgrimage sites and remote areas

The steps taken by ISRO to further integrate space technologies with the working of the Government to enable good governance include:

i)           Formation of expert working groups in ISRO to have regular interaction with the departments
ii)         Preparation of joint action plan for short term & long term space technology applications
iii)       Conduct of Proof of Concept or Pilot projects
iv)       Development of customised tools and applications
v)         Institutionalisation of space applications and enabling formation of space technology cells in the Ministries / Departments
vi)       Capacity building of the officials of Ministries / Departments.

This information was provided by the Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) Development of North-Eastern Region (DoNER), MoS PMO, Personnel, Public Grievances & Pensions, Atomic Energy and Space, Dr Jitendra Singh in a reply to an unstarred question
in Lok Sabha today. 

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