ISRO to receive Gandhi Peace Prize for 2014

NEW DELHI: The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) will receive the Gandhi Peace Prize for the year 2014.


The prize will be presented by President Pranab Mukherjee at a function at Rashtrapati Bhavan. 


The Gandhi Peace Prize was instituted by the Government in 1995 on the occasion of the 125th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi.


This annual award is given to individuals and institutions for their contributions towards social, economic and political transformation through non-violence and other Gandhian methods. 


ISRO works with the vision to "harness space technology for national development, while pursuing space science research and planetary exploration.”


Formed in 1969, ISRO superseded the erstwhile Indian National Committee for Space Research (INCOSPAR), which was established in 1962 by the efforts of independent India's first Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru and his close aide and reputed scientist Dr. Vikram Sarabhai. The establishment of ISRO thus institutionalised space activities in India. 


ISRO built India's first satellite, Aryabhata, which was launched by the Soviet Union on 19 April in 1975. In 1980, Rohini became the first satellite to be placed in orbit by an Indian-made launch vehicle, SLV-3. ISRO subsequently developed two other rockets: the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) for launching satellites into polar orbits and the Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle (GSLV) for placing satellites into geostationary orbits. These rockets have launched numerous communications satellites and earth observation satellites. Satellite navigation systems like Gagan and IRNSS have been deployed. In January 2014, ISRO successfully used an indigenous cryogenic engine in a GSLV-D5 launch of the GSAT-14.


On 22 October, 2008, ISRO sent its first mission to the Moon, Chandrayaan-1. On 5 November, 2013, ISRO launched its Mars Orbiter Mission (MOM), which successfully entered Mars orbit on 24 September, 2014, making India the first nation to succeed on its first attempt, and ISRO the fourth space agency in the world and first Asian space agency to reach Mars orbit. 


The space agency’s future plans include development of GSLV Mk III (for launch of heavier satellites), development of a reusable launch vehicle, human spaceflight, further lunar exploration, interplanetary probes, a solar spacecraft mission, etc.


ISRO has conducted a variety of operations for both Indian and foreign clients. It has several field installations as assets, and co-operates with the international community as a part of several bilateral and multilateral agreements. As many as 41 foreign satellites have been launched by ISRO's launch vehicles.

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