The Space and Upper Atmosphere Research Commission (SUPARCO), best known as the SUPARCO (Urdu:ا سپا ر كو or پاکستان خلائی و بالا فضائی تحقیقاتی ماموریہ) is an executive agency of the Government of Pakistan, responsible for nation's public and civil space program and aeronautics and aerospace research. It was established in its modern form in 1961 by an executive order of President Field Marshal Muhammad Ayub Khan on the advice of its founding director, Abdus Salam. The agency is part of Pakistan Defence Forces's Strategic Plans Division (SPD) under the current control of Pakistan Army. The SPD is headed by the Army's retired three star general Lieutenant-General Khalid Kadwai. SPD headquarters are located at the Pakistan Air Force controlled Chaklala Cantonment.

The executive figure of the agency is Major-General Ahmed Bilal who is heading the agency as the current chairman of SUPARCO, while he is also serving his tenure as Colonel Commandant of Pakistan Army Corps of Signals Engineering.

Please see attached pdf for a detailed presentation on SUPARCO.

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#NASA #astronauts, #scientists answer #Pakistani fourth-graders’ #science questions on Twitter. #Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield, #American TV host Emily Calandrelli replied to the tweet https://gn24.ae/aa2409bc4ec6000

A group of fourth graders from Karachi got the surprise of their lives today when they wrote a letter asking American space agency Nasa (National Aeronautics and Space Administration) some questions about space and got replies from astronauts and space experts.

Students of The Cornerstone School in Karachi, Pakistan, had some questions for astronauts about travelling to space. Promoting curiosity in her students, their teacher helped them post the questions on Twitter. She tagged Nasa’s official Twitter account as well as some astronauts in hopes of getting a response.

The tweet soon started gaining attention as people began retweeting it to help make it viral. Eventually, astronauts and space experts took notice of it and replied.

The Emmy-nominated American science TV host Emily Calandrelli, who hosts Xploration Outer Space and Emily’s Wonder Lab, was the first expert to reply to the tweet.

A 10-year-old student Alisha had asked: “What fuel does a spaceship use?”

Calandrelli replied: “All different types! Some popular rockets that you’ll see will use a fuel plus an oxidiser. For example, something called RP-1 and then liquid oxygen. These are combined and then *ignited* and burned to create a big (controlled) explosion that moves the rocket!”

Nine-year-old Haniyah asked: “Is it true that it rains diamonds on Jupiter?”

The MIT-engineer replied: “It’s definitely possible!! The same physics and chemistry that creates diamonds here on Earth (putting carbon under super high heat/pressure) exist on planets like Jupiter, so some scientists hypothesize that it’s raining diamonds there. Wouldn’t it be fun to see that?”

Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield who often shares space videos replied to 10-year-old Mahrukh’s question: “How do you feel when you get blasted off in a space shuttle?”

@Cmdr_Hadfield replied: “Mahrukh - I flew in the Space Shuttle twice. You feel violently shaken, squished, super-focused, excited, and lucky.”

He also replied to another student named Rayyan, who asked: “Do you get scared that your space shuttle might get lost?”

Along with a picture of Karachi from space, @Cmdr_Hadfield tweeted: “Rayyan - I wasn't scared we'd get lost. We had the Earth nearby, and used the stars to steer. I felt especially comforted when I flew over home. Here's a photo I took of Karachi - can you find your school?”

By October 15 morning, screenshots of the tweet were viral on other social media platforms as well. And Nasa scientists and space experts started replying to the questions on Reddit. Twitter users later posted these responses in reply to the teacher’s original tweet.

Tweep @tahaazher wrote: “Also these replies from Nasa scientists on @reddit. They have invited the students when the pandemic is over.”

That’s not all. The students got a reply from the control centre of Ariane 6, which is a launch system developed and manufactured under the authority of the European Space Agency. And the German Aerospace Center also sent replies to their questions.

The excited teacher, Aimun, shared an update with the reactions the students had when she handed them the responses that all the space experts had sent in.

Twitter users found the thread of questions and answers very heartening, and some even felt emotional after reading it.

Many Pakistani tweeps also commended the teacher for thinking of putting the questions on Twitter. @smoodwrites replied: "I'm really glad you did this. I was a super space-curious kid... Pakistan needs more teachers like you."

Such a poor presentation with hardly any future target dates or current progress data. The first launch vehicle launch is 20 years from the date, and this is from a country that has a capability to build intermediate range ballistic missile.

SUPARCO has been reduced to a image processing shop, where the purchased images and data are processed for some government/military use. Landsat and SPOT is a very old agreement between Pakistan and US. Even the Gulf countries and of course Iran have progressed way ahead of Pakistan, some of them have good space programs.

Ameer Alam

Pakistan, China space cooperation being revved up
The Pakistani space programme did not witness as much growth as was expected and planned due to increased focus by the government on the nuclear programme

https://www.business-standard.com/article/international/pakistan-ch... (Indian source)

Pakistan and China have been collaborating in the field of space technology for some time now. The progress made thus far by Pakistan in building its space infrastructure has been mainly a result of constant assistance from China, even though Pakistan had taken the initiative of setting up its Space and Upper Atmosphere Research Commission (SUPARCO) as early as in 1961 with a promising dream of building its own space architecture under the guidance and supervision of Abdus Salam -- a Pakistani physicist and Nobel Laureate, who is also the founder of the Pakistani space programme.



However, over the years, the Pakistani space programme did not witness as much growth as was expected and planned due to increased focus by the government on the nuclear programme. This led to shifting of scientific talent and resources towards Pakistan's nuclear programme.

Moreover, the years of governance by the military led to a lack of freedom and independence for scientists in Pakistan. Realization of prioritized objectives became the mainstay of the scientific community. Subsequently, with the signing of an agreement between the Chinese Ministry of Aerospace Industry and SUPARCO in 1991, the Pakistani space programme got more attention.

Over the years, one saw considerable exchanges between the two sides as the Pakistani space program saw progress and growth. China and Pakistan also signed a 2012-2020 roadmap for space cooperation between SUPARCO and the China National Space Administration (CNSA) in 2012. This agreement sets the pace for more intensive cooperation between the two sides.



Besides, the fact that China and Pakistan have signed an agreement on space exploration, China has also successfully launched two remote sensing satellites for Pakistan. There are also plans for Pakistan to send an astronaut to space with the help of China. The Chinese have also been assisting Pakistan in its Remote Sensing Satellite project.



According to reliable inputs, SUPARCO is in the process of acquiring Satellite Image Telemetry Service and Associated Ground Station for High-Resolution Optical Satellite Constellation. In this regard, a Chinese entity M/s China Great Wall Industry Corporation (CGWIC), has come forward in cooperating with SUPARCO. The technical proposal submitted by the company is presently under consideration before being finalized. Earlier, in August 2020, SUPARCO was in the process of procuring High-Resolution Optical Satellite imagery data and its telemetry services, and the Chinese company M/s China Volant Industries Co. Ltd. (VOLINCO) had come forward with assistance.



Pakistan has also been exploring the possibility of cooperation with other countries in the space sector with the aim of modernizing and advancing its space programme. In this connection, a three-member delegation from SUPARCO was scheduled to visit (September 5) Bucharest to meet officials of M/s Airbus Defence and Space. The delegation, led by Zafar Iqbal, Member, Space Application Research Wing, was also to discuss possible areas of bilateral cooperation with Romania in the field of Space Sciences,Technology & Applications. M/s Airbus Defence and Space, Romania, established in 2005, is a subsidiary of M/s Airbus that provides a full spectrum of defence & space products and related services.

Pakistan, China space cooperation being revved up
The Pakistani space programme did not witness as much growth as was expected and planned due to increased focus by the government on the nuclear programme

https://www.business-standard.com/article/international/pakistan-ch... (Indian source)

Pakistan has also been exploring the possibility of cooperation with other countries in the space sector with the aim of modernizing and advancing its space programme. In this connection, a three-member delegation from SUPARCO was scheduled to visit (September 5) Bucharest to meet officials of M/s Airbus Defence and Space. The delegation, led by Zafar Iqbal, Member, Space Application Research Wing, was also to discuss possible areas of bilateral cooperation with Romania in the field of Space Sciences,Technology & Applications. M/s Airbus Defence and Space, Romania, established in 2005, is a subsidiary of M/s Airbus that provides a full spectrum of defence & space products and related services.



Space programmes are of enormous value for a developing nation especially in the context of peaceful uses of space technology which can contribute towards climate monitoring, agriculture science, socio-economic sector, urban planning etc. However, Pakistan has always been seeking a competitive edge over India in every sphere and the high degree of insecurity that prevails in the Pakistani establishment vis-a-vis India has undoubtedly led to a strong defence centric focus of its space programme.

With China's assistance, Pakistan would have been inevitably working towards proactively building the framework of a defence oriented space programme. This is an area that will warrant close watch by the international community as behind the scene cooperation between China and Pakistan can lead to damaging outcomes, especially since Pakistan's core objective in expanding its space and nuclear programmes has been to remain a step ahead, if not at par, of India.

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