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India Plans to Participate in US Manned Mission to Moon

India is open to participate in the United States's plans for a manned mission to the moon, Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) Chairman G. Madhavan Nair was quoted as saying on Sunday by the Press Trust of India. 

US President George W. Bush reportedly announced last week that US would again send a man to the moon in the next 20 years.


"We have to study the US announcement. If there are any useful scientific experiments which can be beneficial, we will participate," Nair was cited as saying.


However, he said, the country is first pooling its resources independent of the US plan to undertake its unmanned mission to the moon, Chandrayaan-I, by 2007 using the indigenous polar satellite launch vehicle.


ISRO plans to send a low altitude (100 km) polar orbiter for global imaging, mineralogy and chemical mapping with high spatial and spectral resolution sensors.


Nair said that discussions would be held with US officials including from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration at joint Indo-US workshop at Bangalore in June, whose focus is on peaceful exploration of space, on areas of scientific and business cooperation between the two countries.


(Xinhua News Agency January 19, 2004)

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