Indian Space Research Organisation Current Affairs - 2019

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Unique Flood Hazard Atlas: Odisha

Odisha has come out with a unique flood hazard atlas aided by satellite imagery, which is expected to help the coastal state manage floods more efficiently. The atlas was released by Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik at the State-level Natural Calamity Meeting.

About Flood Hazard Atlas

Need: Atlas would serve as a useful resource of information for policy makers, planners and civil society groups.

Base Period: Atlas is compiled on basis of historic flood inundation captured via satellite imagery over 18 years period from year 2001 to 2018.

Methodology:

Firstly, all satellite data sets were analysed and flood layers were extracted from it, then all flood layers corresponding to a particular year were combined into one inundation layer, so that this layer represents maximum flooded area in 1 year period.

Then all such combined flood layers for a period of 18 years were integrated into flood hazard layer representing observed flood-inundated areas with different frequencies. This layer was integrated with digital database layers of Odisha.

Key Findings of Study

The National Remote Sensing Centre (NRSC) of Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), Hyderabad had undertaken a study on Odisha’s flood hazard zonation.

Floods in Odisha: Every year vast areas of Odisha are inundated when there is flooding in major rivers of state, viz. Mahanadi, Subarnarekha, Brahmani, Rushikulya and Baitarani. Also, as per Odisha State Disaster Management Authority (OSDMA), damages due to floods are mainly caused by Mahanadi, Brahmani and Baitarani, which have a common delta where floodwaters intermingle and when in series simultaneously cause havoc.

Flash Floods: Few districts in western and southern part of Odisha are prone to flash floods which are caused due to instant run-off from hilly catchments areas of rivers like, Vamsadhara and Budhabalanga.

Hazard Prone: The entire coastal belt is prone to storm surges, which is commonly accompanied by heavy rainfall which then makes estuary region vulnerable to both storm surges and river flooding. Few districts in Odisha’s western and southern part of are prone to flash floods.

Hazard Categories: As per NRSC analysis during 2001-2018, about 8.96% (13.96 lakh hectares) of land in Odisha was affected by floods. Out of this 13.96 lakh hectare flood-affected area nearly 2.81 lakh hectares of land falls under high inundated flood hazard categories (7-9 times) to very high inundated flood hazard categories (10-14 times).

Month: Categories: Environment & BiodiversityStates

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Fact Sheet: India to have its own Space Station

K. Sivan, Chairman of Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) recently announced that the country is planning to launch its own space station and modalities for it will be worked out after Gaganyaan Mission (India’s maiden manned mission to space).

Key Highlights

Mastering Technology: Although ISRO made announcement of space station recently but it has been quietly working on a key technology such as space docking & berthing technology for which it has also got Rs.10 crore sanctioned earlier. Once the agency will master this technology it will help join two separate free-flying space vehicles and also transfer materials and humans from one another that will enable this future space station and is also the key for a space station.

Extension: India’s space station project will be an extension of Gaganyaan Mission, which involves sending three Indian astronauts to space for 7 days in lower earth orbit (of 120-400 km). The government has already approved a cost of Rs.10,000 crore for Gaganyaan mission. Before the maiden flight with crew sometime in August 2022, there would be two unmanned (without crew) flights from Sriharikota, Andhra Pradesh.

The detailed project report on setting up India’s space station will also be submitted to government after Gaganyaan.

No Collaboration: India will not be collaborating with any other country for its space station project. United States (US), Russia, China and a consortium of nations that own the International Space Station (ISS) are the only countries that have had space stations so far. After its successful launch India would become 4th country to launch a space station.

Features:

The proposed space station is anticipated to weigh about 20 tonnes, it would be placed in an orbit 400 km above earth and will serve as a facility where astronauts can stay for upto 15-20 days in space.

India is targeting 2030 as the date to launch country’s space station which will most likely be used to conduct microgravity experiments.

It is one of the most ambitious projects ever undertaken by India.

What is a space station?

It is a spacecraft that designed to remain in space for an extended period of time and can be used for other spacecraft to dock as well as capable of supporting crew members, the most commonly known being the International Space Station (ISS).

International Space Station: It is a habitable artificial satellite in low earth orbit (LEO). It is the largest human-made body in LEO that completes multiple orbits around Earth every day thus can often be seen with the naked eye from Earth. Its first component was launched into orbit in 1998 and since then it has been inhabited continuously.

Month: Categories: Science & Technology

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