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India, Australia sign Amended MoU to increase cooperation in Civil Space Activities 

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India & Australia expand space cooperationOn February 17, 2021, Australian Space Agency & Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) signed an Amendment of the ‘2012 India – Australia Inter-Governmental MoU for cooperation in Civil Space Science, Technology and Education’ for enhancing cooperation between the two countries in Civil Space Activities.

  • The Agreement for Amendment is signed by Dr. K. Sivan, Chairman, ISRO/ Secretary, Department of Space & Mr. Enrico Palermo, Head, Australian Space Agency during the Virtual meeting.
  • This Amendment makes Department of Space, Government of India and Australian Space Agency as the Executive Organisations and provides scope for other related entities to conclude implementing arrangements for specific cooperation activities.
  • The MoU has been developed as part of the Comprehensive Strategic Partnership between Australia & India, which was announced by Prime Ministers of both countries in June, 2020.

Key Points:

Geosciences Australia — a government agency carrying out geoscientific research — and Isro have arrangements to cooperate on satellite laser ranging and tracking of the Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System (IRNSS) and on using Australian corner reflector infrastructure for calibration and validation of the Indian synthetic aperture radar systems.

Collaborations under Progress:

Australian Space Agency, ISRO are working together to set up Temporary ground station tracking facilities in Australia for ISRO’s Gaganyaan Mission.

  • Gaganyaan Mission: India’s 1st Human space mission scheduled to launch in Satish Dhawan Space Centre at Sriharikota, Andhra Pradesh by 2022.
  • India’s Gaganyaan Mission will make it just the 4th Nation to send a crew into space after Russia (1st), U.S. and China.


  • Increases the scope of activities under which the Australian & Indian agencies can coordinate their work.
  • Will boost collaboration between two countries in the fields of Civil Space Research, Technology and capability development, educational activities and use of outer space for peaceful purposes.

Recent Related News:

i.On November 28, 2020, Karen Andrews, Australian Minister of Industry, Science and Technology stated that Australian Space Agency & ISRO are working together to set up Temporary ground station tracking facilities in Australia for ISRO’s Gaganyaan Mission.

About Australia:

Prime Minister – Scott Morrison
Capital – Canberra
Currency – Australian Dollar (AUD)

About Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO):
Chairman – Dr. K. Sivan
Headquarters – Bengaluru, Karnataka