India successfully launches IRNSS 1C

IRNSS 1C, the next satellite in India’s IRNSS (Indian Regional Navigational Satellite System) series, was launched successfully on October 16 by ISRO. IRNSS 1C was launched on a PSLV C26 from Sriharikota. The satellite is similar to, and follows the IRNSS 1A and 1B which were launched in April 2013 and July 2014 respectively.

Details of launch

The rocket lifted off at 1.32 am. The satellite weighed 1, 425.4 kg and was successfully placed into a sub geosynchronous transfer orbit just 20 minutes after the launch. This was the 7th time that ISRO used an XL version of the PSLV rocket for its mission. The life of the satellite is estimated at 10 years.

IRNSS series

IRNSS is a navigation system that will cover India, and also extend 1,500 kms from its boundaries. It will provide accurate position information to users in India and will also be used for terrestrial and marine navigation, disaster management, fleet management and for vehicle tracking. Basically it will provide two kinds of services, Standard Positioning Services, which is available to all users, and an encrypted service that is provided only to authorized users. However, to be able to use the IRNSS satellites, ISRO will have to launch at least four of the seven planned IRNSS satellites. The complete IRNSS system will include three satellites in geostationary orbit and four satellites in geosynchronous orbit at an altitude of 36,000 km above the Earth. The deployment of all the satellites was expected to be completed by 2015 at a cost of Rs. 1,420 cr.
IRNSS is similar to other satellite navigation service providers like USA’s GPS (Global Positioning System), Russia’s Glonass, Europe’s Galileo, Japan’s Quasi Zenith and China’s Beidou.

Applications of IRNSS

  • Terrestrial, Aerial and Marine Navigation
  • Disaster Management
  • Vehicle tracking and fleet management
  • Integration with mobile phones
  • Precise Timing
  • Mapping and Geodetic data capture
  • Terrestrial navigation aid for hikers and travellers
  • Visual and voice navigation for drivers



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