National Current Affairs – UPSC/IAS Exams- 30th May 2019
ISRO, IAF Partner for Gaganyaan Manned Mission Crew Selection
- The Indian Air Force (IAF) on 29th May said it signed an agreement with the state-run Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) on 28th May for crew selection and training for the country’s prestigious maiden manned mission Gaganyaan by 2021-22.
- The agreement was signed by Assistant Chief of Air Staff (Space Operations) Air Vice Marshal R.G.K. Kapoor and Gaganyaan Project Director R. Hutton in the presence of the space agency’s Chairman K. Sivan
- The crew selection and training will be conducted at ISRO’s Human Space Flight Centre, opened on January 31 adjacent to its headquarters in the city, to develop technologies for the manned space missions.
- As announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in his Independence Day address on August 15, 2018, the space agency will send three astronauts, including a woman, in a capsule into space around the earth’s orbit for a week-long rendezvous by December 2021 or 2022, which marks the country’s 75th year of independence.
- The Rs. 9,023-crore ambitious project involves sending a 3-member crew on board a heavy rocket to an altitude of 350-400 km and orbit around the planet for conducting experiments in space during a week-long voyage.
- The previous NDA government on December 28, 2018 approved the country’s first human space flight programme.
- In the run-up, the space agency will send two unmanned missions before 2021 and the manned mission by 2022
- ISRO on January 31 opened a Human Space Flight Centre adjacent to its headquarters here to develop technologies for manned space missions.
- The Human Flight Space Centre will also develop engineering systems for crew survival in space and sustained human space flight missions.
U.S. digs its heels on Iran oil sanctions
- The U.S. has said that there is no change to its position on the import of Iranian oil by other countries.
- State Department spokesperson Morgan Ortagus reiterated the U.S. stand in response to reports in the Indian media that New Delhi was trying to continue limited imports of Iranian oil which it intended to pay for in rupees.
- They have stated that there are no new exemptions after May 2nd as it relates to importing Iranian oil. The U.S. position there remains quite firm.
- India was one of eight countries that had a six-month waiver from sanctions against buying Iranian oil, which went into effect in early November last year, months after the United States pulled out of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), an international deal to curb Iran’s nuclear programme. That waiver expired on May 2.
- During the press briefing, Ms. Ortagus also said that the Secretary of State Michael Pompeo “will have a very robust discussion on a range of issues.