We are in the space age! Where the Indian Budget plans have
allocations to the tune of USD 7.4 bn1 towards the
development of space related activities, and sponsored space
explorations, we also proudly stand to have been able to make
sustainable, cheap missions. India's first interplanetary
mission has made us the first nation in the entire world, to reach
the Mars Orbit in the very first attempt. In many of firsts, ISRO
is only the fourth space agency to have successfully reached the
red planet's orbit, only after the Soviet Space Program, NASA
and the European Space Agency.2
Interestingly, the total cost of the mission was approximately
450 Crores (US $ 74 mn). In comparison with the missions sponsored
by the other space agencies, this is the cheapest mission by far.
The following figure gives a comparative sketch of the costs of all
the missions conducted to reach the Mars Orbit, as of yet. Our
mission into the mars orbit comes at a comparative cost of about
11% of the Maven Mission, impressive it is!
One of the main objectives of this mission is to "develop
the technologies required for design, planning, management and
operations of an interplanetary mission." The technological
objective of the mission envisages the design and realization of an
orbiter which is capable of sustaining and performing earthbound
maneuvers; deep space communication and navigation. The scientific
objectives of the mission aim at exploring the surface features of
the red planet, the Martian morphology, mineralogy and the
This 1337 kg weighing satellite deemed for the purposes of
'science and exploration'4, has been
successfully launched into the outer space at a budget even less
than a few Hollywood movies about space. The latest movie on Space
"Interstellar" released in 2014, came out with a
production budget of $165 mn.5
India's achievement has been made possible for a really
small budget. And, when we compare the investments in our mars
mission to that of the investments made in the films about outer
space exploration, we find the inspiration to proceed on the space
front with our low cost innovations and efficient launching
From where we started with writings on astronomical computations
by Aryabhata, Brahmagupta and Bhaskara I, we have come to the point
of funding mars orbiter missions on shoestring budget. The mission
planning, manufacturing of the spacecraft, launching of the
vehicles and fine tuning the support systems were all done in a
constrained time frame, once India decided to go to
The country is on its way to demarcate a niche for itself in the
domain of space technology and high end technical, scientific
missions. It is for these times that we will need a stringent and
comprehensive framework for the protection of the Patent rights in
the outer space.
1. The Space Economy at Glance 2014, available
, last visited onApril 20, 2014.
This article enunciates the recent, much awaited, and landmark judgment delivered on September 16, 2016 by Hon'ble Delhi High Court throwing light on the important provisions of the Copyright Act, 1962.
The Patents Act 1970, along with the Patents Rules 1972, came into force on 20th April 1972, replacing the Indian Patents and Designs Act 1911. The Patents Act was largely based on the recommendations of the Ayyangar Committee Report headed by Justice N. Rajagopala Ayyangar. One of the recommendations was the allowance of only process patents with regard to inventions relating to drugs, medicines, food and chemicals.
Register for Access and our Free Biweekly Alert for
This service is completely free. Access 250,000 archived articles from 100+ countries and get a personalised email twice a week covering developments (and yes, our lawyers like to think you’ve read our Disclaimer).