The President of India, Smt Droupadi Murmu graced an International Conference cum Exhibition on ‘Aerospace & Aviation in 2047’, organised by the Aeronautical Society of India to commemorate its 75th Anniversary,  in New Delhi today (November 18, 2023).

Speaking on the occasion, the President said that from its humble beginnings in 1948 till today, the Aeronautical Society of India has worked tirelessly to ensure that not only the aeronautics as a knowledge-system grows by leaps and bounds, but it also impacts life of every citizen in a substantial manner. She appreciated all for their outstanding contribution to the advancement and dissemination of the knowledge of aeronautical sciences and aircraft engineering that has made the aeronautical profession as one of the most sought-after and glamorous careers.

The President said that aviation is a remarkable feat of human ingenuity that brings the imaginative power to reality with seamless fusion of technology. Aerospace and aviation are simultaneously humbling and almost superhuman activities that afford us the vast global connection of the planet we inhabit and exploration of space and beyond.

The President said that as we celebrate the journey of the Aeronautical Society of India, we cannot help but marvel at the achievements and breakthroughs our nation has made in the fields of aviation and aerospace, space technology, missile technology and aircraft technology. Whether it is the feat of successful completion of the Mars mission or showcasing the end-to-end capability in safe landing and roving near the Moon’s South Pole – a place considered beyond human endeavour, India has proved that it has the willpower, potential, and capacity to accomplish what it sets out to achieve. The highest standards of quality, cost-effectiveness and punctuality have been the hallmarks of all of our projects.

The President said that though we have made long strides, there also remain many challenges. The aerospace sector has been undergoing a transformative phase by bracing up for speed and runway-independent technologies for defence purposes, air mobility and transportation. There is also the demanding task of cultivating human resources well-versed and ready to tackle these issues in right earnest. At the same time, there is also a need for upskilling and reskilling of the current workforce.

The President said that the decarbonization of aero-propulsion is an onerous task we will have to undertake because climate change and global warming are threatening the very existence of humans. She stated that the development of sustainable jet fuels is one of the much-needed steps to decarbonize the economy but it is hardest to achieve because traditional fuels are of very high density. Finding non-fossil sustainable resources which could replace these traditional fuels should be the priority objective because we are approaching a climate tipping point. To reduce our carbon footprint, we need to rapidly adopt new propulsion technologies at a large scale, such as electric, hydrogen, and hybrid. She expressed confidence this Conference would provide valuable solutions to many of the challenges.