May 13, 2005

India: Space Giant

Satellites which orbit the earth at 800-900 kms of height is giving us images of earth from few kilometres resolution to 61 centimetre resolution.

The technology has a come long way now the lenses could easily see the people standing on the road. See the Vatican picture. Taken by US satellite DigitalGlobe OrbView 61 cem image. By the way, do you knowthat till 1998, India was providing the highest commercial (not spy satellites of US, Russia) resolution images of 5 metre to even US cutomers!!

These images have immense application from natural resources identification, planning etc. (I know all these, because it's my subject area - if you have questions (easy ones) - post it to me - i will try to answer!)

By the way, India is one among the forerunner in building and launching these satellites (both for Weather and Earth Observation). Recently, launched CARTOSAT will provide 2.5 metre resolution black-and-white image of earth (since the satellite is rotating all around the earth, it will take pictures almost any part, with the exception of the polar regions!)

This launch once again proved to the world that India is capable of launching the Moon Mission in the near future. Now from any (or every?) common man, a question will arise "Is this necessary to spend millions and millions in space research, for a poor  country like India?". (by the way, but, who says India is poor? - just add up the last 5 scandals net worth!)

I came across a similar question in our Hon'be President's website. Have a look at his answer. Convincing isn't?


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