Friday, November 17, 2017
India and Japan Agree for Joint Lunar Mission at APRSAF Summit
India and Japan will launch a joint lunar mission to jointly explore the moon. Announcing this at a press conference, Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) Chairman A S Kiran Kumar and his Japanese counterpart Dr Naoki Okumura said that an implementation agreement for the collaborative mission will be finalised within the next two months.
Both India and Japan have already conducted separate lunar missions and wanted to further probe the mysteries of moon through joint work.
India’s next lunar mission, Chandrayaan 2 was expected to take off before March next year with a proposal to land a rover on the surface of the moon.
Dr Kiran Kumar and Okumura said that the proposal was still in its infancy and no specific time frame has been set up. However the two countries would move fast and realise a joint mission as soon as possible.
Apart from the Lunar mission and the mars mission, ISRO has recently set out expression of opportunities for interplanetary explorations, including missions to Venus, a repeat mission to Mars and study of astrides. It has also taken up a solar Mission Astra.
Okumara expressed confidence that the two countries could effectively collaborate in utilising the space for societal benefit of the region. His country was also looking forward for collaboration in the fields of remote sensing and climate change.
Kiran Kumar said that India was also looking into cooperation with Israel on various space segments. An agreement has been signed with that country recently and a definitive move would be made soon.
Israel Space Agency Director Avi Blasberger said that an agreement for space collaborations were signed during the recent visit of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to his country.
The key areas of joint collaboration identified included electric propulsion for smaller satellites and atomic clocks. Israel was already providing electric propulsion to satellites.Both Okumura and Blasberger were here in connection with the 24th meeting of the Asia Pacific Region for Space Agency Forum (APRSAF) which concluded in the city.