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India and France are celebrating, this year, the 50 years of their space cooperation, which started with the transfer of the technology of the “Centaure” rocket in 1965. The Indo-French cooperation is the oldest and the strongest that India has with a European country. Since the 1990s, the French space agency (CNES) and ISRO have been collaborating together, CNES becoming, at the time, the first international partner of ISRO. The joint initiative resulted in the launch of the first Indo-French climate satellite, “Megha-Tropiques” in October 2011. A second joint satellite, “SARAL”, was launched on February 2013. Under this cooperation, Indian satellites were launched from Kourou (in French Guiana) by Ariane rocket, the most recent being GSAT-16 in 2014, while French satellites Spot-6 and Spot-7 were launched by India’s PSLV in 2012 and June 2014 respectively.

President Hollande and Prime Minister Modi unveiled a joint stamp France La Poste – India Post celebrating the 50 years of Indo-French cooperation on Space. Prime Minister Narendra Modi will visit the CNES headquarters in Toulouse on Saturday 11 April 2015, along with Mr Laurent Fabius, French Minister of Foreign Affairs.

Joint statement:

16. Celebrating the 50thanniversary of Indo-French space cooperation, and praising its fruitful and successful outcomes from joint research to joint missions, the Leaders welcomed the signing of Programme between their Space Agencies for a reinforced cooperation in space activities addressing joint realization of third earth observation mission, earth observation applications, planetary exploration; MoU on Ka-band propagation experiment; and a document to extend the utilisation of Indo-French Joint Satellite, Megha Tropiques, for two more years. They released a commemorative joint stamp to mark 50 years of cooperation in the space sector.

Agreements:

- Programme between Centre National d’Etudes Spatiales (CNES) and Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) // signed on 10 April at the Elysée Palace

- Extension of the cooperation agreement on Megha Tropiques satellite between CNES and ISRO // signed on 8 April in Delhi

- CNES-ISRO agreement on the Ka-Band propagation experiement// signed on 8 April in Delhi

  • Indo-French space cooperation is one of the cornerstones of our strategic partnership. The conclusion of the new programme between CNES and ISRO will strengthen cooperation in climatology, Mars exploration, and space applications. It also enables France and India to support their industrial cooperation.

Last modified on 11/04/2015

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