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Australia to Support India's Gaganyaan Mission by Tracking it Through Cocos Keeling Island: Aus Space Agency

Australia Space Agency has said that it will support India's Gaganyaan mission. (File photo: ISRO)

Australia Space Agency has said that it will support India's Gaganyaan mission. (File photo: ISRO)

Gaganyaan is India's ambitious human space mission aimed at taking three Indians to Lower Earth Orbit (LEO).

Australia will support India’s Gaganyaan mission by tracking it through Cocos Keeling island, Deputy Head Australia Space Agency Anthony Murfett said on Monday. Speaking at the International Space Conference organised by the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), Murfett said the space cooperation between the two countries is on an upswing and the space agencies of India and Australia have recently updated their Memorandum of Understanding. “We are going to be supporting this Gaganyaan mission by tracking through Australia’s territory on the Cocos Keeling islands," he said.

Earlier this year, ISRO chief K Sivan had said the space agency is also in talks with the Australian counterpart to have a ground station at the Cocos Keeling islands for the Gaganyaan mission.

Satellites in orbit cannot pass along their information to the ground stations on Earth if it does not have a clear view of the ground station. A data relay satellite serves as a way to pass along the satellite’s information.

There are blind spots due to which there is a possibility of not receiving signals, sources said. The data relay satellite tracking from Cocos Keeling island is expected to help address the issue.

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Gaganyaan is India’s ambitious human space mission aimed at taking three Indians to Lower Earth Orbit (LEO).

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first published:September 13, 2021, 20:09 IST