The Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) has been gearing up for an increased number of launches in the near future, including its second mission to moon ( the Chandrayaan-2) and the first mission to the sun (Aditya L-1).
The Prime Minister on Wednesday announced another ambitious project for Isro, revealing plans to send a manned mission to space by 2022. In an interaction with T E Narasimhan, K Sivan, Chairman of ISRO and Secretary to the Department of Science, said the mission, along with other projects, will see more industry-academia collaboration. Edited excerpts:
Are you confident of meeting Prime Minister's plan to send an Indian to space by 2022?
Though the time lime is tight, we can do it. Isro has already built the technologies that is required for a human spaceflight.
The Prime Ministers' decision is a real gift to the nation on the Independence Day. This particular announcement will give a boost to science and technology in the country by inspiring youngsters to do more. It is going to be a national project as it will involve multiple organisations, including academia.
The project will bring India at par with developed countries on the science and technology front, making every Indian proud of his country.
What will be the cost of the project? How will it be funded?
We need to work out that. It cannot be very high, because we have already developed a technology. Although there is no budget constraint, we expect the total cost to be less than Rs 100 billion.
What will be the role of private players?
We will involve both private companies and academia in this mission. Already 95 per cent our activities are carried out by various companies. The same will happen with this project as well.