As we begin the swanky new year with great hope and fervor, ISRO too has laid out its plans, promising to make 2018 a historic one for India. Its failure of the launch mission in August (the first after Dec’10), pretty much remained an overhang for the rest of 2017 but looks like, this year could be much better.
In the first half of 2018, starting January itself, it has planned a few missions – the lunar lander-cum-rover mission, the Chandrayaan-2, the second GSLV-MkIII heavy-lift launch carrying the advanced communications satellite GSAT-20. In February, there will be the military communications spacecraft, GSAT-6A launch.
The year will also see the much awaited and highly talked about commercial Moon rover mission from the startup – TeamIndus, the finalist in a Google XPrize lunar contest.
For FY18, ISRO had set itself the target of 15 missions which included 8 main launchers and 7 satellites. Maybe it might not be able to meet the target but space programs are always unpredictable; one might have planned a launch right to the smallest detail, yet it might never take off. Thus targets for the likes of ISRO are rough road maps and we are glad that this Govt institution is so vibrant and kicking today. ISRO is indeed every Indian’s pride!