Continuing its efforts on pushing private participation in the sector, the department of space (DoS) has drafted a new Space Remote Sensing Policy (SRS Policy-2020) focused on creating ‘ease of data access’ aimed at unlocking the immense potential of remote sensing data.

  • Promising easy dissemination of data and services originating from space-based remote sensing systems, the policy reads: “Any service provider will be free to provide remote sensing data and services to any user in the country by following a simple process of registration/authorisation of assets.
  • This means that private firms will soon have access to all earth observation data except “sensitive data”, defined as “very high resolution data having ground sampling distance distance of better than fifty centimetre.
  • Earlier all such data was owned by Isro and we used to give access to some of it for free. Now, any institute or firm will have access to most of our data for free, while we will charge a small fee for high accuracy data which will allow firms small and big to develop more products, applications and technologies.
  • Besides, private firms will also be allowed to launch and operate remote sensing payloads which enable earth observation of India and other geographical areas. They will also be allowed to host ground stations.

Space Remote Sensing Policy (SRS Policy-2020)

  • The draft seeks to ensure easy dissemination of data and services generated from space-based remote sensing systems.
  • Any service provider will be free to provide remote sensing data and services to any user in the country by following a simple process of registration / authorization.
  • According to the draft policy, private companies will soon have access to all land observation data. However the Department of Space has restricted the use of very high resolution data for national security reasons.
  • Earlier private companies had to pay a fee to use ISRO data, but now any institution can use ISRO data without paying any fee.
  • In addition, private companies will also be allowed to launch and operate remote sensing payloads. These payloads will enable observation of India and other geographical regions.
  • In addition, private companies will also be allowed to host the ground station.
  • The policy allows private players to have space assets in low earth orbit (LEO), medium earth orbit (MEO), , geostationary orbit (GEO) or in any other orbit and use of space-based remote sensing in any part of the electromagnetic spectrum to or from Indian territory.

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