- Discuss how the Gaganyaan mission has the potential to position India at the forefront of human space exploration. Highlight the mission’s importance and the challenges it faces.
- The Gaganyaan mission could propel India to the center of human space exploration. In this context, discuss the significance of the mission and associated challenges.
- Briefly explain about the LaserInterferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO). How will the establishment of LIGO-India contribute to advancing India’s scientific capabilities?
Q: Discuss how the Gaganyaan mission has the potential to position India at the forefront of human space exploration. Highlight the mission’s importance and the challenges it faces. (15 Marks, 250 words)
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Article 21 of Indian constitution declares Right to Life as a fundamental right, which includes clean and pollution free environment (M.C. Mehta v. Union of India). In pursuance of the objective, The NCPA was started as pollution control initiative in Jan 2019, with objective to:
- Ensure implementation of prevention, control, and abatement measures of air pollution.
- Improve the monitoring network.
- Enhance public awareness regarding air pollution and capacity building measures.
|Steps taken under NCAP to tackle the air pollution:|
- Improve air quality in 131 cities in 24 States/UTs by engaging all stakeholders.
· Targeted approach by setting good practice of air pollution reduction targets – The programme envisages to achieve reductions up to 40% Particulate Matter10 (PM 10) concentrations by 2025-26.
· More comprehensive Action Points with detailed indicators to enhance the potential impacts.
· Health on Board: by supporting for health impact studies.
· Collaborative approach: Bringing Citizens, scientific community, private sector, and government together.
|Performance so far:|
- As per NCAP Report, there has been marginal or no improvement in air pollution levels in 32 cities since 2019.
· As per Centre for Research on Energy and Clean Air (CREA), only 38 of the 131 cities achieved their annual pollution reduction targets.
· Only 180 stations have been installed instead of 1500 stations over the last four years.
|Key Reasons for dismal performance:|
- Absence of legal backing: Thus, unable to take action/impose penalty in case of violation.
· Absence of compliance mechanism: Lack of well-trained personnel for inspection makes implementation difficult.
· Data related hurdles: Due to substandard monitoring stations; lack of appropriate methodology to leverage real-time data.
· Urban-Rural Disparity in terms of air quality monitoring: Only a small section of country’s population is being monitored effectively.
· Absence of robust fiscal and funding strategy: Only Rs 300 crores has been allocated, which is very little for the magnitude of challenge.
There is need for legal backing, appropriate funding, better data collection & analysis etc. to make NCAP more effective and to achieve the goal of reducing particulate matter levels in 132 cities by 20-30% by 2024.
Q: The Gaganyaan mission could propel India to the center of human space exploration. In this context, discuss the significance of the mission and associated challenges. (15 Marks, 250 Words)
The Gaganyaan mission’s short-term aim is human spaceflight to Low Earth Orbit (LEO), laying the groundwork for a sustainable Indian space exploration program.
- Sustained Exploration: The mission advances India’s ability for affordable human and robotic exploration of the solar system. It aids global space station collaboration and national scientific experiments.
- Research Collaboration: Gaganyaan encourages academia-industry partnerships, fostering national development, employment, and advanced science and R&D.
- Inspiration for Youth: The mission motivates Indian youth towards science and technology careers, fostering a skilled workforce.
- Foreign Policy Leverage: A thriving human spaceflight program enhances international partnerships and peaceful goals, acting as a diplomatic tool.
- Simulating Atmosphere: Gaganyaan must recreate Earth-like conditions in a confined space, ensuring oxygen, temperature, and humidity during the mission.
- Health Risks: Space radiation and isolation pose health threats, including cancer risks, depression, fatigue, and sleep disorders.
- Rocket System Safety: Complex rocket systems require robust safety features to minimize life loss, but comprehensive testing in real operating conditions is challenging.
- Launch Escape System: Space travel’s energy demands necessitate precise, safe launch escape systems to minimize risks during prelaunch, launch, and post-launch phases.
- Re-entry and Recovery: Mastering re-entry technology is crucial. Spacecraft must endure high temperatures and navigate precise re-entry to avoid disasters.
ISRO’s plan involves an uncrewed mission in 2022, followed by a robot-carrying mission, culminating in crewed missions. Gaganyaan marks India’s milestone in global space exploration.
Q: Briefly explain about the LaserInterferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO). How will the establishment of LIGO-India contribute to advancing India’s scientific capabilities?
Introduction: Briefly define the LIGO.
Body: Mention about LIGO-India for advancing India’s scientific capabilities.
Conclusion: Write futuristic approach towards LIGO-India.
- LIGO: LIGO (Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory) is a scientific project aimed at detecting and studying gravitational waves. Gravitational waves are ripples in the fabric of spacetime, predicted by Albert Einstein’s theory of general relativity.
- LIGO consists of two identical observatories, located in Hanford, Washington, and Livingston, Louisiana, which work together to detect gravitational waves.
- Each observatory has two arms, each 4 kilometers long, arranged in an L-shape. Inside each arm, laser beams are fired back and forth between mirrors, and the interference pattern of the beams is measured to detect any changes in the length of the arms.
- LIGO made its first detection of gravitational waves in 2015, which was a major breakthrough in physics and astronomy. Since then, it has made several more detections, providing insights into the nature of black holes, neutron stars, and the universe as a whole.
LIGO-India for advancing India’s scientific capabilities:
- India has been an active collaborator in international science projects, such as the Large Hadron Collider experiments and ITER.
- The establishment of LIGO-India will provide Indian researchers and scientists with access to the latest technology and research opportunities in the field of gravitational wave astronomy and enable collaboration with researchers from other countries.
- This will have significant spin-off benefits for India’s science and technology sector.
- However, India has not yet built a cutting-edge scientific facility on its own soil, while the Neutrino Observatory has faced delays.
LIGO is a ground-breaking facility that has opened a new field of gravitational wave astronomy and made several discoveries. The establishment of LIGO-India is a milestone for India’s scientific community, allowing for new discoveries and advancements in our understanding of the universe.