In 1988, an International Space Year Mission to Planet Earth Conference was held in Durham, New Hampshire, USA in which senior management officers from 17 Governmental space agencies/organisations as well as about 60 Earth observations scientists participated. The Conference agreed to establish a Space Agency Forum on International Space Year (SAFISY) which was to meet periodically to facilitate the exchange of information and ideas on ISY programmes. The major theme for ISY Mission to Planet Earth was also endorsed by the Conference.
Three Panels of Experts on (i) Earth Science and Technology, (ii) Education and Applications and (iii) Space Science were set up to carry out the recommendations of the Working Groups at the Durham Conference. A total of 57 projects were identified under these panels to be carried out under 15 Working Groups. Besides, several events and activities related to ISY 1992 have also been planned by the world scientific community.
The General Assembly, at its forty-fourth session, in its resolution 44/46 of 08 December 1989, endorsed the participation of the United Nations in the International Space Year (UN-ISY). The scope of the UN-ISY activities undertaken by the United Nations in 1991-92, in cooperation with Member States as well as governmental organisations, focuses on three major areas:
(i) Management of the resources of the Earth and its environment;
(ii) Long-term education programmes;
(iii) ublic education
In celebration of the ISY 1992, a World Space Congress is scheduled to be held in Washington, D.C., USA from 28 August to 05 September 1992, which will be organised by Committee on Space Research (COSPAR) and International Astronautical Federation (IAF). This will be an unprecedented gathering of world space scientists, technologists, administrators and policy makers representing both developed and developing countries.
Ever since the inception of the ISY concept, Pakistan Space & Upper Atmosphere Research Commission (SUPARCO) has been involved in visualising a comprehensive and befitting programme for celebrating the ISY 1992. A SUPARCO-ISY Committee had also been established to formulate the national programmes for this purpose. The programmes comprise several events, such as TV & Radio Panel Discussions; publication of special articles in the national press; holding of exhibitions on space research with special reference to ISY, in major cities of Pakistan; holding of Topical Seminars on Satellite Remote Sensing and Satellite Communications etc.
Pakistan Space and Upper Atmosphere Research Commission (SUPARCO) was set up as a Committee in September 1961 with the specific objective of acquiring the capability to make use of space science and space technology for peaceful purposes, primarily aimed at the socio-economic uplift of the people of Pakistan and also to give a general fillip to the scientific and technological activities in the country.
The 30th anniversary of the launching of the first scientific rocket in Pakistan by SUPARCO falls on 07 June 1992.
SUPARCO was completely recognised and established as an independent national organization with the status of a full-fledged Commission in 1981.
During the last three decades, SUPARCO has launched more than 200 rockets to perform scientific experiments in the altitude range of 20-550 kin, and, has now all the capabilities/facilities to manufacture rockets required for high altitude scientific research.
On 16 July 1990, SUPARCO launched its first indigenously made experimental satellite named BADR-1 and is now under way to fabricate its second experimental satellite BADR-B.
(Contributed by: Pakistan Space & Upper Atmosphere Research Commission, Karachi)
To commemorate the International Space Year 1992 as well as to mark the 30th anniversary of the launching of the first scientific rocket of SUPARCO named Rehbar-1, Pakistan Post Office is issuing two commemorative postage stamps of Re. 1/- and Rs. 2/- denominations on June 7, 1992.