[Answered] India recently became a signatory to the Artemis Accords. Discuss the implications of this decision for India’s lunar exploration program. How can international cooperation, particularly with the US, benefit India’s space ambitions?

Introduction: What are Artemis Accords?

Body: What is its impact on India’s space program?

Conclusion: Way forward.

Artemis Accords 2020 are a set of 13 principles that ensures that space exploration is conducted in a safe, sustainable, and transparent manner and full compliance with international law. The signatory countries agree to abide by these principles that are mostly a reiteration of established international law on space exploration, like a commitment not to use space for military purposes, a promise to cooperate on matters of safety of space assets and astronauts, and a willingness to share scientific data from space missions. The founding members of the Artemis Accords are Australia, Canada, Italy, Japan, Luxembourg, United Arab Emirates, the United Kingdom, and the US. By signing the Artemis Accords, India has expressed its commitment to adhere to the best practices in space exploration.

What implications does this have on India’s lunar exploration program?

  • Close cooperation in space programs: By signing the accords India has opened up possibilities of much closer cooperation between ISRO and NASA on the Artemis mission which aims at returning to the moon, setting up a permanent station there, and then using it for deep space exploration.
  • Gaganyaan Project: India’s human spaceflight program could receive a push from the signing of the accords and it could help in expediting the project to send astronauts into space.
  • Knowledge sharing: Artemis Accords enables the sharing of information and experience, and helps to progress technical innovation, scientific research, and the expansion of humanity’s presence in space.
  • Diversification in the supply chain: Artemis Accords will help to create a semiconductor ecosystem that encourages supply chain diversification with numerous US-based companies ready to collaborate with India. These projects demonstrate the expanding technological and innovative cooperation between India and the United States.

How can these accords benefit India’s space ambitions?

  • Chandrayaan 3: The accords will help India in collaborating with other nations to achieve success in its lunar mission. This can help to foster scientific curiosity and help India in raising skilled engineers and scientists.
  • Geopolitics: The accords will give India a say in space-related matters which are mostly discussed among developed nations and Russia, and China.
  • Cooperation with ISRO: Accords will help ISRO in utilizing India’s private sector for deep space exploration. The private sector can help offer products and services to foreign nations like software, ground tracking technology, and developing scientific payloads.
  • Strong regulatory framework: India will need domestic law to govern its space activities in line with international commitments and a strong regulatory framework to promote space activity and protect India’s international interests.


These accords will push India to review its policy on outer space and pursue deeper lunar cooperation among like-minded nations & contribute to the development of new global norms that will strengthen the essence of the Outer Space Treaty.


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