ISRO launches Regional Navigation Satellite

RSTV Bureau
File photo-PTI

ISRO’s seventh navigation satellite IRNSS-1G that would set up regional navigation system for India, a day before its launch from spaceport of Sriharikota. File photo-PTI

India will now move closer to having its own navigation satellite system as the seventh and last in the series of the constellation of Regional Navigation Satellite System, IRNSS-1G on board PSLV-C33, launched from the spaceport of Sriharikota in Andhra Pradesh on April 28.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi appreciated the efforts of ISRO scientists and called the navigation satellite a great gift to people.

“With this successful launch, we will determine our own paths powered by our technology. This is a great gift to people from scientists,” said Narendra Modi.

Launched satellite makes India’s regional navigation system on par with United States’ Global Positioning System (GPS) and provides location and time details accurately to everyone around the world.

Unlike the Global Positioning System, India’s system will provide accurate location and time to the Standard Positioning Service (SPS) users in India, using the SPS within the geographical boundary of India and a little beyond that.

“The benefits from this new technology will benefit our people, our fishermen. The world will know it as Navic,” said the Prime Minister who watched the launch live from Delhi.

The entire satellite-navigation system will work with two navigation bases — Space Segment and Ground Segment. The seven satellites in the Space Segment would send the location and time information to a chain of ground segments located at 21 different locations in India.

The ISRO Navigation Centre in Karnataka’s Byalalu area will operate as the headquarter.

ISRO had launched the sixth navigation satellite IRNSS-1F on March 10, the other five being IRNSS-1A on July 1, 2013, IRNSS-1B (April 4, 2014), IRNSS-1C (October 16, 2014),IRNSS-1D (March 28, 2015) and IRNSS-1E (January 20, 2016).  According to ISRO officials total cost of all the seven satellites was Rs 1,420 crore.

Soon after the Mission Readiness Review Committee and the Launch Authorisation Board gave its approval on Monday, the 51.30 hour countdown for the launch of IRNSS-1G began at 09.20 hours on 26th April and was “progressing smoothly” for the launch scheduled for April 28 from the first launch pad at Sriharikota by 12.50pm.

“Countdown operations are progressing normally and everything is ready for the launch (scheduled for tomorrow)”, ISRO Chairman A S Kiran Kumar told reporters at airport.

The PSLV-C33, carrying IRNSS-1G, in its 35th flight, would be the XL variant that was used during launch of Mars Orbiter Mission, Chandrayaan-1, ASTROSAT besides the six IRNSS

The 44.4 metre tall IRNSS-1G has a lift-off mass of 1,425 kg and would be launched in sub-Geosynchronous Transfer Orbit (sub GTO). It has a 12 year mission life. With the operationalisation of six satellites, India has
demonstrated the system’s targeted position accuracy which is much better than 20 metres over 24 hours of the day.

With the launch and operationalisation of IRNSS-1G, the seventh in the constellation, the completion of IRNSS constellation will be achieved, ISRO said