Space Pacts

Space Pacts Recently 2 major commercial agreements with leading US companies have boosted the morale of Indian space programme to great heights.

The first is with "Intelsat", the 135-nation Washington-based International Inter-Governmental Telecommunications Satellite Organisation, to which India will lease 11 36mnz C-band communication transponder units on its prestigious Insat-2E satellite scheduled to be orbital in late 1997 on a Russian proton booster. It will be orbited on geo-synchronous slot at 83 degrees east longitude which passes near Allahabad, Varanasi, and Vishakhapatnam in India.

The other agreement is with "Eosat" -- Earth Observation Satellite Co, USA, which will market the imagery and data from 10 Indian Remote Sensing Satellites (IRS) scheduled for launch by AD 3005.

If these agreements are finalised, India would establish herself as a powerful commercial space vendor in the world.

Eosat -- a joint venture of Hughes Aircraft and Martin Marietta, USA, had started receiving data last year from IRS-IA and IRS-IB at its Norman (Oklahama) ground station in the US. It is now relying on IRS-IC to be launched in August/September 1995, that would provide 23 meter multispectral data and 5.8 meter panchromatic data equipped with a crop stress sensor and a wide field camera measuring almost 800 km.

Intalsat on the other hand, will be leasing the transponder capacity on insat-2e, to be launched in 1997-98. This satellite carries telecommunications, meteorology, data relay and search and rescue payloads of the same satellite. This is the first straight commercial lease for this organisation.

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