French, Indian Scientists Meet in Goa

Now this is the place to have a conference. 

Between the trance music, the beaches, and the all-day-and-all-night parties….  well, we can understand why management never leaps at the idea when we propose a blogging retreat there at the beginning of each new quarter.

But if you’re actually doing business in India, Goa’s a nice destination, which is why the Joint Working Group of the Indian Space Research Organisation and the French Space Agency Centre National d’Etudes Spatiales (CNES) met there this past weekend to review the progress of their collaborative projects.

Top of the agenda (besides suntanning and dancing, we presume) was the status of Megha Topiques, an Indo-French collaborative satellite project scheduled for launch in 2009 for tropical weather monitoring:

 The french-indian MEGHA-TROPIQUES satellite is devoted to atmospheric research. The data collected by the satellite will … improve our knowledge on the water cycle contribution to the climate dynamic in the tropical atmosphere and our understanding of the processes linked to the tropical convection. CNES and the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) will share joint responsibility for the satellite and science missions, with CNES acting as prime contractor for some of the instruments.

Megha Tropiques carries four payloads– a microwave radiometer, a humidity sounder, a radiation measuring instrument and a radio occulation sounder for atmospheric studies. Key among its tools is MADRAS, a conical scanning microwave imager developed jointly by CNES and ISRO.


The Megha-Tropiques satellite will be launched by an Indian PSLV launcher on a 800 km orbit with an inclination of 20°. 

It will be identifiable by the glowsticks attached to the satellite upon launch. </snark>