ISRO gets dedicated control centre to monitor objects in space, safeguard assets


The Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) has set up a dedicated Control Centre to monitor, track and protect India’s space assets and coordinate between Indian agencies, their foreign counterparts and international bodies. Directorate of Space Situational Awareness and Management (DSSAM) has been established at ISRO to enhance Space Situational Awareness.

Space Situational Awareness (SSA) is the science of tracking objects (man-made and natural) that are in orbit and also predicting what they would be at a given point in time. So far, only America, Russia and Europe have similar established capabilities in place to track space objects and share collision warnings.

An entity focused on SSA is much-needed owing to the manner in which space is getting over-populated with government, private satellites, man-made space debris which pose a serious threat to satellites that are orbiting the earth.

The real danger posed by a possible collision of satellites would be the debris of varying sizes scattered across space in all directions, in high-speeds with high potential of harming other satellites.

As of January 2020, there are around 2,000 active satellites orbiting the earth. There are also more than 23,000 pieces of debris larger than 10cm (4inches) in orbit, according to NASA.

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