India-Bhutan SAT: How India Is Helping Smaller Nations Like Bhutan With Space Technology


India-Bhutan SAT: The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) is helping nations smaller than India by providing them with space technology. One of these nations is Bhutan. On November 26, 2022, ISRO launched nine satellites as part of the PSLV-C54 mission. One of these satellites was BhutanSAT, a Bhutanese satellite. Scientists from both India and Bhutan jointly developed this satellite. On March 13, 2023, ISRO Chairman D Somanath, along with some delegates, inaugurated a Ground-Earth station for BhutanSAT, also known as India-Bhutan SAT. The station was established at Thimphu. 

The delegation also discussed expanding India-Bhutan space cooperation and ways to deepen space tech ties further. They discussed expanding space tech cooperation through capacity building and by focusing on the application of space data and technology across sectors for the benefit of people. 

On March 13, 2023, ISRO Chairman S Somanath and other delegates went to Bhutan and discussed expanding India-Bhutan space cooperation and ways to deepen space tech ties further. They also discussed expanding space tech cooperation through capacity building and by focusing on the application of space data and technology across sectors for the benefit of people. (Photo: ISRO)

This ground station has enabled Bhutan to receive data from BhutanSAT, and to process data in real-time. 

The data from BhutanSAT is being used to assess inland water quality, forest and biomass cover, snow and glacier cover, and Bhutan’s geology and hydrology. 

 

On March 13, 2023, ISRO Chairman D Somanath, along with some delegates, inaugurated a Ground-Earth station for BhutanSAT, also known as India-Bhutan SAT. The station was established at Thimphu. (Photo: ISRO)
On March 13, 2023, ISRO Chairman D Somanath, along with some delegates, inaugurated a Ground-Earth station for BhutanSAT, also known as India-Bhutan SAT. The station was established at Thimphu. (Photo: ISRO)

On September 18, 2023, Shantanu Bhatawdekar, Scientific Secretary, ISRO, met Lotay Tshering, the prime minister of Bhutan. Bhatawdekar shared his expertise in remote sensing technology with the prime minister. 

ISRO and other Indian government officials also reviewed ongoing space collaboration activities between India and Bhutan, and discussed future initiatives to be implemented under the bilateral space cooperation programme.

All this is part of efforts to strengthen ties between India and Bhutan in new and emerging technologies.

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India has also helped train engineers from Bhutan to build and test satellites. 

“India has assisted in training Bhutanese engineers to build and test satellites, as well as to process and analyse the satellite data from BhutanSAT,” Manish Purohit, a former ISRO scientist, told ABP Live. 

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This space cooperation between India and Bhutan is important because it will allow Bhutan, a nation smaller than Bhutan, to leverage space technology. The ground station established by ISRO in Bhutan for satellite tracking is one of the ways in which India is showing its willingness to share space technology with its neighbours. 

“India is playing a bigger role in bringing smaller nations on board with space tech. India is playing the role of an enabler for nations like Bhutan to cherish the advantages of space tech. With the establishment of a ground station in Bhutan for satellite tracking, ISRO is also making the point of open approach for space involvement with our neighbours,” said Purohit.





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Radifah Kabir

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