ISRO and NASA briefly stopped working together, Know why

NewsBharati    10-Apr-2019



Chennai, Apr 10: ISRO’s 'Mission Shakti' is one of the most successful and well-appreciated mission. After the successful completion of this mission, India was praised by all-over the world. But NASA found some issues with the debris of this mission and the futuristic collaboration of these two important and powerful institution approached on the verge of end.

According to latest reports, Following India's 'Mission Shakti' anti-satellite test on 27 March, NASA had purportedly stopped all cooperation with ISRO under the 'NASA-ISRO Human Space Flight Working Group' collaboration between the two national space agencies.

As per the various American media reports, NASA suspended any and all of its activities under the collaborative program two days after the test was carried out, only resuming a few days later.

In a letter addressed to Dr. K Sivan, Chairman of ISRO, on 29 March, NASA's associate administrator for international and interagency relations, Al Condes said that NASA was suspending its participation in a working group between the two agencies in matters related to human spaceflight.

It is NASA’s view that human spaceflight is simply incompatible with the purposeful creation of orbital debris generated by anti-satellite testing," the letter, provided by NASA, stated.

NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine had publicly criticized India’s anti-satellite missile test in the days after it happened. He stated that the 60 pieces of trackable debris and the 400-odd pieces were a hazard to space programs globally. A week after the test, Bridenstine also declared that some of the debris was gradually moving to higher altitudes and posing a threat to the space station and the astronauts aboard.

On 4 April, came a second letter addressed to Dr. K Sivan, just as the number of objects linked to the test in orbit going above the space station had increased. The letter said the cooperation between the two agencies would resume, along with work on several working groups including that for Human Space Flight.

Giving the example NASA's lunar project hitching a ride on ISRO's upcoming Chandrayaan-2 moon mission, NASA head Bridenstine said, NASA had no plans to reduce "cooperative engagements" with India or do "anything asymmetric”.

On this whole issue, neither of the two official letters to the ISRO Chief made mentions of changes to the original plans for the Chandrayaan-2 mission, which carries a laser retroreflector instrument developed by NASA.