Space debris removal a $2.7 billion industry: Ex-ISRO chairman Kiran Kumar

He was speaking at Synergia Conclave ‘Security 360 degree’ by the Synergia Foundation at a private hotel in the city on Friday.

Published: 19th October 2019 05:04 AM  |   Last Updated: 19th October 2019 05:16 PM   |  A+A-

Former ISRO chairman A S Kiran Kumar

Express News Service

BENGALURU: There are established markets for the monitoring and removal of space debris, and the revenue from such removal is expected to be $2.7 billion, said former ISRO chairman Kiran Kumar. He was speaking at Synergia Conclave ‘Security 360 degree’ by the Synergia Foundation at a private hotel in the city on Friday.

Speaking to TNIE, Kumar elaborated that this debris was a result of the spent stages of a rocket. However the country’s space agency is abiding by the UN treaty and following protocols, he added. Now, the focus of various international committees has been on the issue of debris, he said, adding that research is on to create a mesh to try and clear the debris. Efforts are also on to pick up unused satellites from space, he said.

Speaking on the enormous number of earth objects in space, Kumar said that as per the UN’s estimate, there are a startling 4,987 satellites in orbit, of which about 1,900 are still operational. “There have been 8,378 launches since 1957,” he added.

While nations and space agencies are trying to bring down the price of launches, Kumar pointed out the crisis hitting orbital space with a large number of private sectors entering the industry, launching a large number of satellites to provide exceptional communication on ground. “Traffic issues seem to be hounding even the space realm in times of high-speed connectivity,” he said. 

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