GS Paper - 3 (Space Technology)

The ‘NETRA’ in Bengaluru will soon start collaborating with the Combined Space Operation Center (CSpOC) located at the Vandenberg Air Force Base in California to protect satellites of India and the United States from natural and man-made threats.

What

  1. The agreement will help the Indian Space Research Organization’s ‘NETRA’ in Bengaluru to receive from the US data about space debris and other objects in space and potential threat they could pose to the safety and security of the new launches as well as the existing satellites and other space assets.
  2. The ISRO opened its NETRANetwork for Space Object Tracking and Analysis – within the ISTRAC campus at Peenya in Bengaluru on 14 December last year.
  3. The US Joint Space Operation Command Center (JSpOC) transitioned into the CSpOC – a US-led multinational initiative involving the UK, Australia, Canada, France, Germany and New Zealand.
  4. It receives inputs from the Space Surveillance Network and share data with the nations having Space Situational Awareness agreement with the US.

Flashback

  1. Under the project, ISRO plans to put up many observational facilities: connected radars, telescopes; data processing units and a control centre.
  2. They can, among others, spot, track and catalogue objects as small as 10 cm, up to a range of 3,400 km and equal to a space orbit of around 2,000 km.
  3. The project will give India its own capability in space situational awareness (SSA) like the other space powers — which is used to ‘predict’ threats from debris to Indian satellites.