India’s approach to human spaceflight with Rakesh Sharma

Wg Cdr Rakesh Sharma is a former Indian Air Force pilot who flew aboard Soyuz T-11, launched on 2 April 1984, as part of the Interkosmos programme. Sharma is the first Indian citizen to travel in space. In this episode, he talks about his experiences and discusses various aspects relevant to the upcoming human spaceflight program by India.

In this episode, I intentionally choose not to ask questions around Sharma’s experience in selection, training or the flight but tried to have a conversation around India’s approach to human spaceflight itself. Hope you enjoy this episode. 

You can listen to the podcast on the following platforms.… Click here to read the complete article

A management graduate in India’s space agency during the 70s

Did you know that India was the first country in the world to contract a commercial space launch with the Soviet Union!

NewSpace India now has a podcast series that exclusively talks about India’s space activities. In the second episode, Chandrashekar, an IIM grad who was recruited into the space program in the early 70s talks about this and more in the second episode of the NewSpace India podcast.

You can listen to the podcast on the following platforms.

Google Podcast

Apple Podcast 


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Please share this podcast series within your network to help us reach out to your friends/family who may be interested in learning more about the benefits of space for developing countries like India.… Click here to read the complete article

NewSpace India Podcast

NewSpace India now has a podcast series that exclusively talks about India’s space activities. In the first episode of the NewSpace India podcast, Mathieu J. Weiss, the Counsellor Space for the French Space Agency (CNES) talks about some interesting topics such as how 200 Indian engineers went to France to build engines together, the roadmap for future exploration on Venus, building satellites to monitor climate change, etc.

You can listen to the podcast on the following platforms.

Apple Podcast


Pocket Casts



Podcast Addict



Do add suggestions in the comments section if you have any advice for future episodes.… Click here to read the complete article

An app-store analogy to ISRO’s capabilities

Moore’s law in semiconductors drove the consumer electronics revolution and today the likes of Apple and Google have been able to create two-sided platforms that allow independent development of applications by anyone using their platforms. We have witnessed the growth of smartphone-based applications with the opening of their platforms to independent developers and giving them a foundation to scale the types of the range of services that people need. There are over 4 million apps today available in Apple Appstore and Google Play Store. Could we have witnessed such a diverse range of uses of the smartphone-based services with if Apple and Google only allowed its own apps in their respective platforms?Click here to read the complete article

Space 2.0 India – Creating a $10 billion space economy that supports 100,000 high-skilled jobs

Investing in space is one of those things that India got right in incubating technologies that can help us leapfrog to solving complex social problems. Fast forward 60 years from the birth of the space activities, we have established technologies to put systems together and launch satellites and deliver services. Despite all the capability, we in India captures less than 0.1% of the global space market today.

For the lack of a vision, I present my own on how do we go from where are today to possibly creating a $10 billion pie that supports 100,000 high-skilled jobs directly and indirectly by 2030?… Click here to read the complete article

Podcasts for space enthusiasts

If you are a space enthusiast and you want to learn more about the current developments in space science and industry, fasten your seat belts.

Full disclaimer

Podcasts can be a great way of catching up but do not trust them to give you a 360 deg view of the topic they discuss. It’s always important to go back to learn several opinions and check facts before you make up your own or share debatable thoughts with others.

The U.S being one of the leaders in not just investing into space activities, but also having a very well-oiled outreach community for space activities, leaves a mark on the list here.… Click here to read the complete article

India Needs to See Space Is Not Just About Engineering and Strategy

India flies some of the cheapest satellites in the world but pays the highest price for bandwidth to provide services. This was the claim of an official of the Department of Telecommunications (DoT). This person blamed turf wars between the DoT and the Department of Space (DoS), both government bodies.

The bulk of space-based services in India is consumed by the government itself. If such barriers to deliver space services exist between government players, then imagine the plight of folks from the industry looking to venture into the space services arena.

Today, India’s share of the global $400 billion space market may be less than 0.01%.… Click here to read the complete article

India Doesn’t Have an Independent Voice at International Space Fora – That’s Bad

The foundation for international space law was laid in the 1960s, with the Outer Space Treaty. Cold War contests between the US and the USSR brought down the cost of access to space opening the door to new actors and leading to booming commercial activity.

From an operational standpoint, the UN Outer Space Affairs Office (UNOOSA) coordinates with the Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space (COPOUS). The latter has multiple subcommittees that hear several key issues that pose a risk to the use of outer space as a global commons. Their deliberations result either in new resolutions being added to the Outer Space Treaty or in the formulation of new treaties at the UN General Assembly.… Click here to read the complete article

An Open Letter to ISRO Chief K. Sivan on Promoting STEM Education in India

K. Sivan
Chairman, Indian Space Research Organisation

As the premier research establishment in the country, the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) has done a great job of creating technological capacity in an area as critical as space. ISRO’s rockets, missions to the Moon and Mars and applications tailored to cater to the problems of humans and society are all laudable.

Today, there is a growing inequality in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) education in India. In the 21st century, we need our children to learn certain skills and design-based learning to spur curiosity and innovation. There is also a conspicuous issue of lack of resources to invest in building teaching capacity and creating experiment-based hands-on learning environments at the grassroots level, and this affects the quality of graduates in India.… Click here to read the complete article

Time for India to Consider a Special Track for Space Startup Incubation

Believe it or not, today, there are over a thousand startups focusing on space around the world. Yet we only see a handful of startups emerge out of India even though we live in one of the only emerging global powers that has the ability to build, launch, operate and use satellites and rockets. With a network of possibly 500 small-and medium-scale enterprises (SMEs) supporting India’s space activities, the country’s share of these space startups is less than 1%.

The most notable startups in India today include TeamIndus (aiming to land a rover on the Moon as part of the Google Lunar XPrize), Astrome Technologies (developing satellite-based broadband) and Bellatrix Aerospace (developing thrusters with a vision to eventually develop their own launch vehicle).… Click here to read the complete article