India's The Hindu online infosite is reporting that the country's space capacity of 34 working satellites is barely half of what it should be and is severely constrained to meet all demands in the country, the chief of the National Space Agency stated.
India badly needs a larger industry role in making more satellites and launch vehicles at a faster pace, said A.S. Kiran Kumar, chairman of Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) and Secretary, Department of Space. He was speaking at an industry gathering at the Bangalore Space Expo 2016.
ISRO’s satellites—for communication, Earth Observation and navigation—can exactly show fishing zones, forecast crop yields, locate object and people. Today, all state governments are increasingly demanding space-based solutions for efficient governance and to help solve societal problems.
"However, we are significantly short of capacity in space. Probably, we need at least double the number that we have today to give reasonable service to the country," Mr. Kiran Kumar said.
While industry already supplies structures and components for spacecraft and rockets, he said the supply chain was not adequate. ISRO was finding effective ways for itself, its commercial arm, Antrix, and industry to interact and provide practical solutions using satellite technology.
"We are trying to reach across to industry and convey to them the opportunities in the space business segment and the technologies." Indian Industry can also reap the vast global opportunities worth $335 billion today, he said.
Rakesh Sashibhushan, CMD of Antrix, said the aim is to get industry involved in turnkey satellite solutions and building launch vehicles. Deep Kapuria of the Confederation of Indian Industry, which is co-hosting the three-day event, said he looked forward to having space-based traffic management and other spinoffs.