November 30, 2022

ISRO TO REPLACE DEFUNCT NAVIC SATELLITES, PLANS TO LAUNCH NEW SATELLITES TO EXPAND THE SYSTEM

Since several satellites belonging to the NaVIC constellation have outlived their lives, ISRO plans to replace at least five of them with the improved L-band. This would enable the satellites to offer better global positioning service (GPS) to the public.

India aims to expand the Indian Space Research Organisation’s (ISRO’s) regional navigation satellite system NaVIC (Navigation with Indian Constellation) in order to increase the use of the system in the civilian sector and by ships and aircraft travelling at large distances from the country’s borders, news agency PTI reports.

NaVIC, earlier known as the Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System (IRNSS), is designed with a constellation of seven satellites, three of which are placed in geostationary orbit, and four are placed in an inclined geosynchronous orbit. The system also includes a network of ground stations operating 24×7.

NaVIC offers Standard Positioning Service (SPS), a real-time positioning and timing service, to civilian users, and ‘Restricted Service’ (encrypted services) for authorised users, including the military. The coverage area of NaVIC includes India and a region up to 1,500 kilometres beyond the country’s boundary.

ISRO Plans To Replace At Least Five NaVIC Satellites

Since several satellites belonging to the NaVIC constellation have outlived their lives, ISRO plans to replace at least five of them with the improved L-band. This would enable the satellites to offer better global positioning service (GPS) to the public.

“We have five more satellites in production, they have to be launched periodically to replace the defunct satellites. The new satellites will have L-1, L-5 and S Band,” S Somanath, Chairman of ISRO, was quoted as saying on the sidelines of an event in a PTI report.

On the sidelines of the India Space Congress 2022 organised by the SatCom Industry Association (SIA-India), Somanath said the NaVIC system was not in a “full-fledged operational regime” as some of its seven satellites have stopped working.

ISRO Aims To Launch New Satellites To Expand The Reach of NaVIC

He also said that ISRO has approached the government for permission to launch an additional 12 satellites to Medium Earth Orbit (MEO) to expand the reach of NaVIC.

The ISRO Chief added that a regional to ‘global’ changeover will be very fast if one has a GEO-MEO constellation.

The current constellation of satellites which are a part of NaVIC operate in the L-5 band and S band, which are used for the transportation and aviation sectors.

New Satellites Will Be Equipped With L-1 Band

Somanath said that the new satellites need to be equipped with the L-1 band, which is a typical GPS band for public use, and which is not currently there in NaVIC. He explained that this is the reason why NaVIC has not penetrated into the civilian sector easily.

He further said that the new satellites being built for NaVIC will have better features for the safe transmission of signals for different purposes, particularly for the strategic sector.

Role of Satellite Manufacturing Services And Satellite Services In Indian Space Economy

Satellite manufacturing services and launch services are projected to play a major role in boosting the Indian space economy by 2025. Somanath said that currently, all satellites required by the government are manufactured by ISRO. He proposed the idea that if the government needs a satellite, it could be manufactured by a private supplier and launched by an ISRO launch vehicle. This is the concept of an anchor customer, he explained.

The ISRO Chief added that there is a need to create industry capacity in the satellite manufacturing segment of the Indian space sector, and that ISRO becoming an anchor customer could be a step in that direction.

He said there was a need to create industry capacity in the satellite manufacturing sector and ISRO becoming an anchor customer could be a step in that direction.

The Indian space segments which contribute to the country’s space economy are satellite manufacturing, launch services, ground segment and satellite services. Satellite manufacturing is projected to have a market value of $3.2 billion by 2025, ground segment a market value of $4 billion, launch services a market value of $1,046.6 million, and satellite services a market value of $4.6 billion, a joint report by Ernst & Young (EY) and the Indian Space Association (ISpA) states.

Source:PTI

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  • Pazdin Dalal

    A marketing expert from Mumbai takes interest in covering defence and geopolitical issues. He has also been active in covering growth of private defence sector in India.

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