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Watching The Indian Space Research Industry Reach For The Moon and Beyond

As the countdown for the Chandrayaan 3 launch begins, teens at the Young Writers' Club took a break from their busy schedules to take notice of what is happening now.


Space

The question, “What do you know about Indian Space Research?” brought Mission Mangal to the forefront. Every teen had watched the movie and they remembered how the science of frying puris played a role:). While that made everyone of us conjure an image of piping hot puris in our minds, it also forced us to ponder about how much we know about the Indian Space Research Industry. We realised that we don’t know much at all. One out of three teens, was aware that there was a Chandrayaan launch scheduled and thought that it is over. Chandrayaan 3, India’s third mission to the moon is all set to take off on July 14, 2023. It will be launched at 2.25pm from Satish Dhawan Space Centre in Sriharikota. Chandrayaan is an ongoing program of ISRO that was commenced in the year 2008. The maiden launch was successful and India’s rocket to the moon was the first rocket ever to land on the south pole of the moon. The rocket intentionally crashed into the surface releasing a debris that was analysed by orbiting scientific instruments. India’s second mission, Chandrayaan 2 deviated from its trajectory due to a software glitch and hence could not complete the mission.

All eyes are on Chandrayaan 3. The success of the mission would do good in multiple ways starting with increase in investments in space research, employment opportunities and at some level cementing India’s status in the global space research arena known for its cost efficiency and abundance of high tech skill.

The need to know more about space missions and the role that India plays in the global space research:

Mission Mangal helped the common man to get a peek into what happens in the background before a rocket goes off into space on an important mission. It also helped us understand the amount of hard work that scientists put in, the risks involved, the potential benefits, if the mission is successful- all of this reminds us that failure cannot be a deterrent. There is a lesson to be learnt, a clue to makes things better the next time. Space missions also teach us the importance of collaboration and team work even more. There isn’t space for ego. A space mission entails everyone’s strong suits and skills to come into play together to achieve a common goal.

…all of this reminds us that failure cannot be a deterrent. There is a lesson to be learnt, a clue to makes things better the next time. Space missions also teach us the importance of collaboration and team work even more. There isn’t space for ego. A space mission entails everyone’s strong suits and skills to come into play together to achieve a common goal.

The recently published article in the New York Times, indicated to the world that the Indian Space Industry is here to stay and has the potential to make to significant contributions to the field.

As India grows in prominence in global space research efforts, there is room for more collaboration with people working in this space across the world. Sure there could be some healthy competition across the globe but the final goal is common- The need to discover more about space, it may come of use in the future, if at all we need it.

Starting off on a clean slate at the Young Writer’s Club- What do we not know?

Real knowledge is to know the extent of one’s ignorance. - Confucius

All the teens began to research, trying to find more information. They found facts about the Indian Space Research Organisation’s (ISRO)’s achievements. They gained a better understanding for the need for space research and how that justifies the risks and the huge amount of funds that are allocated for this purpose. They read about how private players are also allowed to participate in Indian Space Research today. Today there are 140 startups in this space. This finding led to discussions about how the entry of private players could be help in spearheading the research and making India a key player in this field. Could we one day have free trips to space? What would that be like?

Speaking of Chandrayaan 2 and how it crashed on the moon in its final moments, the group raised questions about what could have gone wrong. We could get to the orbit of Mars why did we crash on the moon that is a lot closer to earth?

The session ended on a curious note. There was a sense of excitement in the air as we realised that when we meet next, Chandrayaan 3 would be on its way to the moon if it hasn’t landed already. We are about to witness a historic moment and will have many stories to pass on to the generations to come.


 

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Both weekday and weekend batches are available at the Young Readers' Club. While this program is for the 8-12 age group, the Young Writers' Club program for the 13-15 age group offers a weekly platform to read and discuss curated articles from the news, observe writing approaches and practise one's writing skills.


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