Chandrayaan-3 lands near Moon’s south pole

India’s Chandrayaan-3 made history by landing safely near the south pole of the Moon. Chandrayaan-3 spacecraft is the first to ever land near the lunar south pole, which is a completely unexplored part of the Moon. Scientists at the control room at India’s space agency ISRO, were cheering and punching the air as the craft touched down.

Even Prime Minister Narendra Modi declared ‘India is now on the Moon!’ and ‘the sky is not the limit’; he followed the launch by video link from South Africa where he attended the BRICS summit. With this, India joins the select group of countries- the US, Soviet Union and China, that have successfully landed spacecraft on the Moon.

Indian Space Research Organization(ISRO)

India’s ambitious space agency, the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), has been making remarkable strides in space exploration, with its eyes set on the Moon. Building upon the successes of Chandrayaan-1 and the orbiter component of Chandrayaan-2, ISRO  geared up for this lunar mission: Chandrayaan-3. This mission held the promise of unlocking new insights about the Moon and showcasing India’s prowess in space technology.

ISRO is one of the world’s leading space agencies known for its cost-effective ventures and advanced technologies. ISRO has launched several missions by putting its best foot forward. ISRO prefers on recruiting fresh graduates from the top engineering colleges in India such as IISc, IITs, NIT, IIST and other highly reputed government also private institutes. Engineering graduates from IIST college with exceptional academic records have an advantage to be absorbed in the organization.

‘ISRO Career Path: From 10+2 MPC to Scientist Roles’

Students need to have MPC subjects(Mathematics, Physics and Chemistry) during their 10+2 level of secondary level education. Then, pursuing BTech or BE courses as Mechanical Engineering, Aerospace Engineering, Computer Science Engineering, Electronics Engineering, Engineering Physics, Radio Engineering and other fields. On completion of the BTech/BE degree, the third step is to give ISRO Centralized Recruitment Board Exam.

Also, students who have completed their Masters (MSc, ME or MTech) courses can apply to the ISRO, selection process includes a written test and an interview. Once candidates clear this, they can secure a job as a scientist at ISRO.

Challenges of Space Research in Nepal: Budget, Infrastructure, and Collaboration

As India’s space-related programs expand across the world, Nepal can also benefit but Nepal has yet to join hands with ISRO. Also, for Nepal it is difficult to have its own launchpad and embark on flights/ space mission is difficult. Launchpad is built geographically near to seas and oceans for safety purposes. If their mission fails, these rockets can be redirected into the water bodies to avoid the loss of lives and properties. Hence, for these reasons, Nepal doesn’t have its own launchpad and even the giant countries who are active in space exploration are renting the already existing launchpads.

On the other hand, Nepal Space Research, especially space exploration doesn’t get enough budget for the research and infrastructure nor it is the priority of the government. Several organizations as The Nepal Academy of Science and Technology (NAST), the Nepal Astronomical Society (NASO) & NESRA have been encouraging people to involve in science and space research, the country needs a separate independent agency dedicated to space research.

Nepalese students travelled to countries like China, Philippines for aerospace engineering course at an expensive cost. Keeping this in mind, TU has stepped forward to provide same course in home country facilitating and encouraging aviation enthusiasts from Nepal.

Now, there are several colleges with national and international affiliations as Pulchowk Campus, CITE- College of Information Technology and Engineering, Kathmandu Engineering College, Nepal Engineering College, Cosmos College of Management and Technology, Islington College, Kathmandu University & Kantipur City College that offer BE/ BTech- Bachelor of Engineering or Technology programs in the country.

Also read: India’s historic Chandrayaan-3 mission